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Youth unemployment in Taiwan different to situation in OECD countries

2012/07/12 14:41:57

Taipei, July 12 (CNA) Youth unemployment in Taiwan is very different to the unemployment situation in Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) countries, said an employment official at the Council of Labor Affairs (CLA) Wednesday.

Lai Shu-li, chief secretary of the CLA's Bureau of Employment and Vocational Training, said the unemployment situation among youths aged between 15-24 in Taiwan is not the same as that in OECD countries, where the European debt crisis has caused job shortages and an overall surge in unemployment rates.

Lai was responding to an OECD employment report that was released Tuesday.

The report noted high global youth unemployment rates were caused by the European debt crisis, and the average unemployment rate is 16.2 percent for youth among the 34 countries and areas covered by the OECD.

In addition, the report highlighted youth unemployment rates in countries particularly hard hit by the crisis, such as Greece and Spain, have soared to 50 percent.

Compared to the OECD's average youth unemployment rate of 16.2 percent, Taiwan's rate was 11.76 percent in May, according to statistics compiled by the Directorate General of Budget, Accounting and Statistics (DGBAS).

Notably, unemployment rates for youths in the 20-24 age bracket peaked to 12.19 percent in May, close to three times the national average unemployment rate of 4.12 percent that month, according to DGBAS data.

Lai attributed Taiwan's high youth unemployment rates to competition for jobs among university graduates and lack of job openings in the education, business and industry sectors.

Other factors behind the high youth unemployment rates include parents who financially support their children too much and many young people's unwillingness to work, Lai added.

Lai urged Taiwan's youth to make use of government resources, such as the bureau training programs, to hone their job skills and employability.

(By Zoe Wei and C.J. Lin)