Bulgaria's unemployment rate to climb to 13.5% in 2014 - ILO

By bne IntelliNews January 20, 2014

Bulgaria's unemployment rate will climb to 13.5% this year from 13.1% in 2013, the International Labour Organisation (ILO) said in the latest edition of its Global Employment Trends.

The ILO expects the jobless rate to reach a ten-year high of 13.8% in 2015 after which it will begin to decline. The joblessness will fall to 12.7% in 2016 and further to 11.7% in 2017 and 11% in 2018, the ILO predicts.

The organisation also said that Bulgaria will have 2.8% labour productivity growth in 2014, up from last year's 2%, accelerating to 3.6% in 2015. However, it will decline in 2016 and increase again in the following two years. 

The unemployment dynamics the ILO predicts suggest that the expected growth in labour productivity in 2014 and 2015 will result from a decrease in the workers' hours spent on production rather than from stronger fundamentals (a restructuring of the economy to a sustainable growth pattern and/or capital accumulation).

Bulgaria's unemployment rate stood at 12.9% in November 2013, unchanged from its October level, which was revised down from a previous estimate of 13.2%, according to latest Eurostat data.

On the other hand, the labour force survey conducted by the national statistics office has shown joblessness of 12% in the third quarter of 2013.

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