Taiwan's jobless rate edged down to 4.71% in November : DGBAS

Dec 23, 2003 Ι Industry In-Focus Ι Furniture Ι By Judy, CENS
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Taipei, Dec. 23, 2003 (CENS)--Taiwan's jobless rate for November edged down 0.21 of a percentage point from October to 4.71%, the lowest since July 2001, according to statistics released by the Directorate General of Budget, Accounting and Statistics (DGBAS) under the Cabinet.

Compared to the same month of last year, the jobless rate posted a drop of 0.51 of a percentage point. And from January to November of this year, the monthly jobless rate averaged at 5.03%. DGBAS predicted that the unemployment rate in December is very likely to keep going down; and if the rate could decline to 4.6% for the month, then the jobless rate for the full year would fall under 5% to reach 4.99%.

The statistics showed that the number of unemployed first-time job seekers in November decreased by 15,000 from October, and the number of total employees reached 9.654 million, up 42,000. In November the labor participation rate reached 57.4%, up 0.06 of a percentage point from October.

A ranking DGBAS official indicated that the recent robust employment market should partly be attributed to the government's expanding job offerings with its construction projects and civil services. Besides, the opening of 'Taipei 101' shopping mall has also rendered a wide variety of job opportunities.

In November the average unemployment period for the jobless was 31.4 weeks, one week longer than the preceding month. In the corresponding period, the average unemployment period for the first-time job seekers was 30.2 weeks, 3.3 weeks longer; while for other job seekers the job-waiting period was 31.7 weeks, about 2.8 days longer.

Compared to the neighboring countries and areas in Asia, Taiwan's average jobless rate of 5.03% for the first 11 month of the year was higher than South Korea's 3.7%, but lower than Japan's 5.2%, Singapore's 5.9% and Hong Kong's 7.5%.
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