European Union

The embarrassing problem of unemployment

Published on 3 July 2012 at 15:17


“Record unemployment in the EU: one in 10 without a job,” reads a headline in Der Standard in response to the grim figures published by the EU statistics bureau Eurostat on July 2. At the end of May, 17.6 million people, or 11.1% of the eurozone’s working population (an increase of 0.1% over April 2012) were without jobs. In the wider area of the European Union, there are 24.9 million unemployed, that is to say 2 million more than there were last year,remarks the Viennese daily, which nonetheless notes one positive point: Austria, where unemployment stands at 5.9%, has got off lightly.

“The problem is embarrassing,” remarks La Vanguardia

Thousands of young Europeans are spending their Mondays in the sun [a reference to the title of the famous Spanish 2002 film about unemployed workers], crushed by the weight of a problem that is particularly severe in Southern European countries, like Spain and Greece, which share the worst reported level of youth unemployment – 52.1 % of under-25s without jobs. And Brussels is none too pleased.

In response to this situation, the Commission has urged national governments to launch academic programmes that are more in tune with the realities of the working world, reports the Barcelona daily, which further points out –

The case of Germany, whose rate of youth unemployment is the lowest in the eurozone at 7.9%, is significant. The country has an abundant and popular selection of “mini-jobs,” which are poorly paid with many wages less than 500 euros, but linked to training schemes in the same company.

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