The unemployment rate dropped in Serbia in the second quarter of 2020 because fewer people were looking for jobs, the Fiscal Council’s chief economist Danko Brcerevic said.
“Overall trends on the labour market in the second quarter were unfavourable which was to be expected,” he said
Earlier, Serbian Finance Minister, Sinisa Mali, said that the unemployment rate in Q2 of 2020 was “at a historic minimum of 7.3 per cent”. Unemployment figures for Q2 2020 were released earlier in the day by the State Statistics Office.
Also, Prime Minister Ana Brnabic said that Serbia would have one of the strongest economies in Europe this year. She also said that an unemployment rate of 7.3 per cent was at EU level and added that Serbia would be ahead of many EU countries in that regard.
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Brcerevic said that unemployment actually rose by more than 70,000 or 2.5 per cent compared to the same period a year earlier. “The unemployment rate is not relevant at this time and the claim that it was at a historic minimum of 7.3 per cent in the second quarter does not mean much,” he said, adding that official statistics register only people actively seeking employment as unemployed.
“Some 150,000 fewer people sought employment in Q2, i.e. during the state of emergency< which is why the unemployment rate dropped,” Brcerevic said and added that no-one should be bragging about the low unemployment rate.
He also underlined that he expected the drop in employment rates to stabilize at 30-50,000 people as predicted at the start of the pandemic.
(Novi Magazin, 01.09.2020)
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