Unemployment continues to fall

Malta’s unemployment rate in February was 3.2%, 0.3% lower than a year earlier.

Statistics released by Eurostat show that, although the unemployment rate in Malta is well below the historical average, it is still continuing to decrease. In fact, the unemployment rate in February was 3.2%, 0.3% lower than a year earlier. This is among the lowest unemployment rates observed since this data started to be compiled. Furthermore, Eurostat’s data imply that Malta has the lowest unemployment rate among all euro area countries.

On average, across the EU unemployment now stands at 6.0%, almost double that in Malta, and with no change compared to a year earlier. While in the euro area the rate is 6.5%, or above the European average, at least there was a 0.1% drop in the rate compared to a year earlier. The highest unemployment rate in the European Union is 11.5% in Spain while the lowest is 2.6% in the Czech Republic.

When it comes to youth unemployment, the rate in Malta is 9.3%, against EU and euro area averages of 14.6% and 14.8%, respectively. The highest youth unemployment rate is 28% in Spain while the lowest is 6% in Germany. Malta has the third lowest youth unemployment rate among euro area countries.

It is worth recalling that, at the height of the recession of 2009, Malta had an unemployment rate of 7.3%, or more than double the current rate, while youth unemployment was 16%, also almost double the current rate.

Under Nationalist administrations, Malta had an average unemployment rate of 6.8%, while youth unemployment was 14.7%. The average under Labour administrations since 2013 is 4.4% among the entire population, and 10.6% among young people.

Currently, for the first time in history, the rate of job vacancies in Malta is greater than that of people looking for a job.

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