BEIRUT: Less than 50 percent of the working-age population was part of the labor force from 2018 to 2019 in Lebanon, according to a recent survey by the Central Administration of Statistics. The European Union-funded survey was launched Wednesday by the Central Administration of Statistics of the Presidency of the Council of Ministers, in cooperation with the International Labor Organization.
It is a one-of-a-kind survey as it was carried out on the national level, the governorate level, in addition to the electoral district level, Ruba Jaradat said. Jaradat, the regional director of the ILO, was speaking during the launch.
The survey used the largest sample group to date, comprised of 40,000 households, Jaradat said.
The study found that 11.4 percent of the labor force is out of work; however, among the youth (aged 15-24) the unemployment rate is 23.3 percent .
According to the survey, the youth unemployment rate in 2018 was the highest since 2004.
The economic crisis plaguing the country has also left thousands jobless, especially the youth, and the situation has been exacerbated in recent months, amid nationwide protests that erupted on Oct. 17.
The working age population, which consists of people between the ages of 15 and 64, makes up 65 percent of the total population.
Lebanon’s economy is service-oriented with a weak industrial base, and the survey said 76 percent of employment is in fact in the services sector.
When it comes to gender parity, around 70 percent of men are in the labor force whereas only 29 percent o women are in the labor force.
Lebanon is committed to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, which include achieving gender equality by 2030.
The survey highlighted that the illiteracy rate for women is higher than that for men.
The school enrollment rate for Lebanese students is around 79 percent and around 48 percent for non-Lebanese students, according to the survey’s findings.
In the absence of a recent official census, this survey is considered the most trustworthy source of information on the demographic, economic and social characteristics of families in Lebanon today, Jaradat said at the launch.