Unemployment rates rise to 13.4% in Egypt, Arabi
Minister of Planning Ashraf al-Araby - YOUM7/Sami Waheeb
By RANDA EL-BANNA

CAIRO: Unemployment rates reached 13.4 percent, which is currently considered the largest problem in Egypt’s economy, Egyptian Minister of Planning and International Cooperation Ashraf el-Araby said according to Hona al-Asema program on CBC on April 27.

Araby said any increase in investment will allow investors to regain trust in the Egyptian economy. He said that local, private, and foreign investments are “the hope” to improve Egypt’s economy and when political situations settle down, the economy will improve and reforming laws of investment can also help.

The World Bank predicted that by 2020 Egypt will have an annual economic growth rate of 6 percent, which will reduce the unemployment rate, MENA reported on Feb. 14, 2014. Egypt’s unemployment rates reached 13.4 percent during the third quarter of 2013, registering an increase of 0.1 percent since the previous quarter, according to a released World Bank economic report, MENA said.

The annual combined bulletin for workforce research for 2013, issued by the Central Agency for Public Mobilization and Statistics, stated that 27,623,000 are the total number of working force in Egypt, while 3,649,000 are unemployed. The report said the percentage of unemployed women exceeds the percentage of unemployed men; approximately 9.8 percent of the unemployed are men while 24.2 percent of unemployed are women.

Egypt’s unemployment rates reached 25 percent while the unemployment rates in North Africa in total are 29 percent on average, according to the Regional Director of the International Labor Organization for the North African region Joseph Qariouti. This report was made on Feb. 19 during a press conference by the organization in cooperation with the media center for the U.N. in Cairo, according to Al-Masry Al-Youm.

The annual conference Global Employment Trends 2014 was organized to announce the results of the International Labor Organization report. The report said that Egypt used to receive $9 billion as foreign investments before the January 25 Revolution. Egypt did not receive any investments after that except for $3 billion in 2013. The more the political and social situation remains unstable, the more unemployment rates will increase, according to the report.

Establishing a national council for social dialogue is “the best solution to rebuild trust between employers and employees,” Minister of Manpower and Immigration Nahed el-Ashry told Al-Ahram Thursday. This will support establishing new projects for investment and increase job opportunities.

Ashry issued a suggestion to Prime Minister Ibrahim Mahlab to form the council she previously mentioned, where employer representatives and companies, along with employer representatives and competent authorities. The council will support procedures to establish projects that improve the economy and help provide appropriate job opportunities, since it is already headed by Ashry. The minister’s suggestion will be issued and considered during the next cabinet meeting to be approved, Al-Ahram said.

The ministry also announced offering 32,739 job opportunities in the private and investment sectors and the results will be announced on the ministry’s official webpage, Al-Ahram said.

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