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Thursday 22 March 2018

Young are twice as likely to struggle for work

Aideen Sheehan

YOUNG people are twice as likely to be unemployed as older workers, according to new figures that reveal Ireland has one of the highest rate of youth unemployment in Europe.

The Central Statistics Office figures also showed Dublin has been the blackspot for both job losses and for businesses going bust in recent months.

Countrywide, unemployment continued to soar as 15,000 more people joined the live register in June.

This is a 9pc increase on the previous year, with a record 452,882 now signing on the dole.

Dublin saw the biggest leap in the numbers signing on last month, up by 4pc on last year to 109,631. Nationwide, the increase was 3.4pc and in the south west it was just 1.3pc.

Unemployment in the eurozone remained at 10pc and Ireland continued to have an even higher rate at over 13pc. Only Latvia, Spain, Estonia, Lithuania and Slovakia fared worse.

But the Irish youth unemployment rate was even worse as 26.5pc of those aged under 25 are without a job. And the figures do not include the high numbers who prolonged their studies or emigrated for work.

Across Europe, the average youth unemployment rate is 20pc. In Spain, Estonia and Latvia it is around 40pc.

Overall, more than 23 million people are jobless in Europe and unemployment has been creeping upwards in 22 countries, the latest Eurostat report showed.

Separate new figures from the Department of Enterprise figures revealed an average of 254 people have been made redundant every working day this year.

There have been 33,876 redundancies in the year to the end of June. This was 20pc lower than this time last year, with 5,339 of these job losses recorded last month alone.

Business lobby group ISME said 44pc of the jobs lost were in the services sector. More than a third (38pc) of those affected were women, which showed how the job losses were spread throughout the whole economy and not just in construction.

"We need the immediate introduction of a comprehensive employment plan to stem the tide of job losses," ISME chief executive Mark Fielding said.

Almost 800 companies have gone bust since the beginning of the year.


Firms supplying domestic demand, particularly hospitality, retail, services and construction, have borne the brunt of the decline, according to the 'Insolvency Journal'.

They accounted for nearly three-quarters of the closures, of which some 40pc were in Dublin. Export-led companies remained fairly robust, contributing to only 13pc of this year's closures.

However, there was some positive jobs news yesterday after a new survey showed US companies were trying to fill 1,250 jobs in Ireland.

The American Chamber of Commerce said the US firms surveyed were currently trying to fill 1,250 vacant positions in engineering, research, production, finance and administration. Some 23 US companies had announced investments in Ireland this year that would create 2,000 jobs in coming years.

Chamber president Lionel Alexander said Ireland's success in attracting US firms was being lost in the continuous doom and gloom stories.

"Ireland remains a location of choice for US companies and these companies are confident of Ireland's ability to emerge from the current recession," he said.

Irish Independent

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