Highest employment rate ever recorded

Labour Force Survey: Malta’s record employment rate is well above the EU average.

According to the Labour Force Survey, Malta had a 79% employment rate in the fourth quarter of last year. This is the highest rate ever recorded and represents an increase of almost 1 percentage point compared to a year ago.

The employment rate in Malta continued to be higher than that observed across the EU. Before 2013 there was a deficit of almost 5 percentage points between Malta’s employment rate and that in the EU, a gap that experts had predicted would persist for several decades. However, as a result of reforms carried out since then, the situation has turned into a gap in Malta’s favour of almost 10 percentage points.

In the fourth quarter of 2023, employment was nearly 10,000 more than a year earlier and stood at more than 305,000 people, or almost double the level in 2012. Among the groups that most benefited from the increase in employment, the prime beneficiaries were women. While before 2013 only 44% of women were in employment, this proportion has now risen to 71%.

With these increases in employment, the unemployment rate fell to 2.9% in the fourth quarter of 2023, lower than the 3.2% it was a year earlier. Compared to the same period in 2012, the rate is less than half, because at that time the unemployment rate was over 6%.

The Labour Force Survey also shows that, in the fourth quarter of 2023, wages were 2.8% higher than they were in the same period during the previous year. Moreover, the average basic wage in December 2023 was €22,040, when in March 2013 it was €15,923. This means an improvement of €6,117 per annum, or a change of 38% from the average wage prevailing before 2013.

Photo: Tiger Lily

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