The most recent Continuous Employment Survey (ECE) of the National Institute of Statistics and Censuses (INEC) shows a decrease in the interannual trend of growth in the unemployment rate since the pandemic began in our country.
“Both the occupancy rate and the net participation rate show an increase compared to the previous moving quarter, adding 81,349 people with employment. The foregoing shows that the labor market has begun to recover dynamism ”, explained the Minister of Labor and Social Security, Geannina Dinarte.
The data for the June-July-August quarter show the highest number of employed persons in the last three measurements of the moving quarter, which could indicate improvements in the dynamics of the economy and the labor market.
The measurement of this moving quarter June-July-August shows an unemployment rate of 23.2%. At the end of the previous month, the data was 24.4%.
At the end of the mobile quarter in August, 544 thousand people were unemployed, a figure lower than that registered by the INEC in the quarter from May-June-July, which was 557 thousand registered.
On the other hand, it is reflected that the trend of higher unemployment rate continues in women compared to men; 29.1% and 19.3% respectively.
“Although the employment figures show a slight improvement, we know that more than half a million people suffer from unemployment caused by the pandemic, and therefore our best effort to generate actions to boost employment,” said Dinarte.
The measurement of this moving quarter includes August, the month that began with the gradual economic opening and responsible for establishments with all health measures, which could be related to this decrease in the growth of the unemployment rate.
Dinarte explained that as of August, progress was made towards greater openness in some sectors of the economy and in cantons where the alert remained in yellow; and together with this, the modification of the law was approved that allows the transfer of holidays to the nearest Monday to support national tourism.
It also highlights the opening of air and sea borders to allow the entry of tourists, mainly from Europe and the United States, in addition to the changes in the hours of shops with sanitary operating permits and the most recent controlled opening of bars and casinos.
On the other hand, since August there have been changes in the measures to suspend employment contracts. According to data from the labor inspection, there are about 7 thousand people who had their contract suspended and today they have returned to their normal working order.
“We hope to see the beginning of the decrease in the unemployment rate thanks to the economic opening measures adopted since August. Although we continue to have an unemployment rate that calls us to take care, we are seeing that there is a slight decrease in this rate, “said the Minister of Labor.
She added that “these measures are intended to have an impact on employment levels in the country. In this balance between economy and health, as a Government we have sought measures to allow economic activity reducing the risks of contagion ”.
Finally, it is worth highlighting as a measure for economic openness, today the Government of the Republic announced the opening of flights to Panama and Central America, as well as the extension of beach hours.