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Unemployment level in Latvia the lowest it has been in the past eight years

Unemployment in Latvia was 7.2% at the beginning of July and 7.1% at the end. This is the lowest unemployment index in the country since 2009, according to data from the State Employment Agency.

Compared with June 2017, the country’s unemployment level has declined 0.1% over the course of a single month. There were 66,708 unemployed people registered with SEA at the beginning of July. This number declined to 65,554 at the end of the month.

This year’s highest unemployment level was registered in January – 8.5%. Unemployment has been declining every month since January. This year’s unemployment level is significantly below that of previous years. The rate at which unemployment continues to decline is also faster.

«Actions have been taken to assist groups at risk of unemployment the most. We also focus on disabled people, cooperate with non-governmental organizations, employers, education institutions and Social Integration State Agency. Through work with Latvian Employers’ Confederation and Latvian Free Trade Unions Association we have commenced work on a project for employees aged 50 or older,» says SEA Director Evita Simsone.

It should be said that the majority of unemployed people in summer 2017 consisted of people older than 50 – 39.1% and lasting unemployed people – 30.6%. Nevertheless, there has been a decline in the number of unemployed persons in all target groups since last year. For example, the number of unemployed youngsters has declined by one-fifth, which is the largest decline when compared with other groups.

There has also been a major increase in the number of available jobs this year. A total of 40,007 jobs were registered with SEA in the first seven months of 2017, which is 17% more when compared with 2016. The number of jobs has grown considerably in sectors like construction, administrative and customer service, as well as finances and insurance.

At the end of July, there were 10,006 jobs registered in SEA database. «The majority of jobs are intended for medium and low qualifications. Employers are looking for cargo truck drivers, chefs, shop assistants, carpenters, concreting machine operators, product packaging assistants, builders, customer service operators, workers with specific skills and assemblers. Employers are also looking for qualified employees with specific knowledge: programmers, ship repairers, electricians and shipbuilding locksmiths,» notes Simsone.


Unemployment was the lowest in Riga – 4.6% and the highest in Latgale – 16.4%. Kurzeme’s unemployment level in July was 7.7%, Vidzeme’s was 7.6% and Zemgale’s was 6.5%.


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