Jordan’s jobless rate reaches 18.2 percent – media

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Jordan’s unemployment has reached an “unprecedented” level unseen in the last 25 years, which would have an effect on the stability and wellbeing of the country, the Jordan Times reported on Friday.

The country’s largest English daily newspaper said that the latest figures from the Department of Statistics (DoS) showed the unemployment reached 18.2 per cent during the first quarter of 2017, rising by 3.6 per cent compared with the same period last year.

By the end of March this year, unemployment among men stood at 13.9 per cent, while 33 per cent of women surveyed were unemployed, the DoS reported.
In the fourth quarter of last year, the rate of unemployment was 15.8 per cent.
Economist Ahmad Awad, director of the Phenix Centre for Economic and Informatics

Studies told the newspaper in an interview on Thursday that the new unemployment rate is “critical” and is higher than at any point in the past 25 years.

“The new figure is also not caused by the Syrian influx, but by government policies which have hit productive sectors, such as agriculture, industry and manufacturing,” said Awad, arguing that high taxes have resulted in thousands of companies not renewing licensing, and investors preferring Egypt and Turkey for business.
An economist named Wajdi Makhamreh also criticised public policies for failing to stimulate job creation.

“There is a loss of confidence in the investment environment and in the national economy’s abilities in light of the increased debt levels and other factors on the ground,” the expert told the Jordan Times.
Makhamreh warned that the unemployment, if remains unaddressed, could leadyoung people to crime or extremism.

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