Marred by economic instability and coronavirus outbreak, the number of unemployed people in Pakistan has been estimated to reach 6.65 million during the fiscal year 2020-21, compared to 5.80m of the outgoing financial year.
According to the Labour Force Survey 2017-18, unemployment rate for the next year (2020-21) has been estimated at 9.56 per cent.
Pakistan has the 9th largest labour force in the world which is increasing every year. During next year, the number of employed persons will increase to 69.2 million in 2020-21 from 62.1 million in 2019-20.
The country is currently experiencing the phenomenon of unemployed educated people, particularly jobless graduates.
The unemployment rate among degree-holders is almost three times higher than the other overall unemployed people. The reason behind this can be attributed to a mismatch between the education being imparted and the need of the economy to sufficiently absorb fresh graduates.
Contrary to slogans of job creation, unemployment among educated people in Pakistan is more widespread than other segments of work force.
According to Labour Force Survey 2017-18, the gender-based difference of unemployment shows higher rate among the female than the male — 8.27% and 5.07%, respectively.
The youth unemployment rate is also quite high as compared to the average unemployment rate. The highest overall unemployment rate (11.56%) is prevalent among the age group of 20-24 years.
The annual plan, while underlining the importance of employment, says that provision of productive, remunerative and decent jobs is the basic mechanism to distribute benefits of growth among the poor segments of society. Provision of employment, particularly to the youth, is a big challenge and highly important to develop and utilize capabilities of the younger generation.
Pakistan is the sixth most populous country in the world with a population of 219m. Given the current rate of population growth, it is estimated to reach 280 million by 2030. At present, 63% of the population is below the age of 30. Helping young people develop the right skills for employment makes economic sense.
Due to the Covid-19 outbreak, Pakistan’s economy has suffered badly in every term. This adverse economic impact of the pandemic has translated through various channels, including decline of domestic demand, business activities, import and export and reduction in production due to supply chain disruption.
One of the very obvious effects is a decrease in employment, particularly among people belonging to the vulnerable employment group. The avenues of manpower have suffered. The pandemic has rapidly extended from the health crisis to economic and labour market crises.