Unemployment, youth total (% of total labor force ages 15-24) (national estimate) - Country Ranking

Definition: Youth unemployment refers to the share of the labor force ages 15-24 without work but available for and seeking employment. Definitions of labor force and unemployment differ by country.

Source: International Labour Organization, Key Indicators of the Labour Market database.

See also: Thematic map, Time series comparison

Find indicator:
Rank Country Value Year
1 Bosnia and Herzegovina 62.80 2012
2 Namibia 56.20 2013
3 Kiribati 54.00 2010
4 Spain 53.20 2014
5 Macedonia 53.10 2014
6 Greece 52.40 2014
7 South Africa 51.30 2014
8 Serbia 49.40 2013
9 Libya 48.70 2012
10 Solomon Islands 45.90 1999
11 Croatia 45.50 2014
12 Swaziland 44.80 1997
13 The Gambia 44.30 2012
14 Italy 42.70 2014
15 Cabo Verde 41.20 1990
16 Montenegro 41.10 2012
17 Mozambique 39.40 2012
18 Jamaica 37.80 2013
19 Tunisia 37.60 2012
20 Armenia 36.10 2013
21 Botswana 36.00 2010
22 Cyprus 35.90 2014
23 Syrian Arab Republic 35.80 2011
24 Gabon 35.70 2010
25 Georgia 35.60 2013
26 Portugal 34.80 2014
27 Lesotho 34.40 2013
28 Egypt 34.30 2013
29 St. Vincent and the Grenadines 33.80 2008
30 Yemen 33.70 2010
31 Grenada 31.50 1998
32 Dominican Republic 31.40 2013
33 Indonesia 31.30 2013
34 The Bahamas 30.80 2012
35 Saudi Arabia 30.40 2014
36 Albania 30.20 2013
37 Slovak Republic 29.70 2014
38 Barbados 29.60 2013
39 Jordan 29.30 2012
40 St. Lucia 27.50 2007
41 Puerto Rico 26.60 2012
42 Dominica 26.00 2001
43 Algeria 25.30 2014
44 Mauritius 25.10 2014
45 Belize 25.00 2012
45 Costa Rica 25.00 2014
47 Iran 24.80 2014
48 Cayman Islands 24.20 2013
49 Guyana 24.00 2002
49 Romania 24.00 2014
51 Ireland 23.90 2014
51 Poland 23.90 2014
53 Bulgaria 23.80 2014
54 France 23.20 2014
54 Belgium 23.20 2014
56 Ukraine 23.10 2014
57 Sweden 22.90 2014
58 Luxembourg 22.60 2014
59 Lebanon 22.10 2007
60 Finland 20.50 2014
61 Hungary 20.40 2014
62 Slovenia 20.20 2014
63 Sri Lanka 20.10 2013
64 Sudan 20.00 2009
64 Morocco 20.00 2014
66 Antigua and Barbuda 19.90 2001
67 Latvia 19.60 2014
68 Lithuania 19.30 2014
69 Uruguay 19.20 2013
70 Samoa 19.10 2012
71 Palau 18.90 1995
72 Argentina 18.80 2014
73 Fiji 18.70 2007
73 Colombia 18.70 2014
75 Haiti 17.90 1999
76 Turkey 17.80 2014
77 San Marino 17.30 2010
78 United Kingdom 16.90 2014
79 Tajikistan 16.70 2009
80 Mongolia 16.60 2013
81 Chile 16.10 2013
82 Czech Republic 15.90 2014
83 Philippines 15.70 2014
84 Suriname 15.30 2013
85 Zambia 15.20 2012
86 New Zealand 15.00 2014
86 Estonia 15.00 2014
88 Timor-Leste 14.80 2010
89 Venezuela 14.70 2014
90 Kuwait 14.60 2011
91 Peru 14.00 2014
92 Azerbaijan 13.80 2013
93 Russia 13.70 2014
94 Canada 13.50 2014
95 United States 13.40 2014
95 Brazil 13.40 2014
95 Kyrgyz Republic 13.40 2013
98 Australia 13.30 2014
99 Paraguay 13.00 2014
100 Senegal 12.70 2011
101 Denmark 12.60 2014
101 Panama 12.60 2014
103 Belarus 12.50 2009
104 El Salvador 12.40 2013
105 United Arab Emirates 12.10 2008
106 Tonga 11.90 2003
106 Nicaragua 11.90 2010
108 Malta 11.80 2014
109 Ghana 11.20 2010
110 Mali 11.10 2014
111 Seychelles 11.00 2011
111 St. Kitts and Nevis 11.00 2001
113 Ecuador 10.90 2013
114 India 10.70 2012
115 Vanuatu 10.60 2009
115 Israel 10.60 2014
117 Netherlands 10.50 2014
118 Pakistan 10.40 2014
119 Austria 10.30 2014
120 Malaysia 10.20 2014
121 Korea 10.00 2014
122 Moldova 9.80 2014
122 Iceland 9.80 2014
124 Bhutan 9.60 2013
124 Mexico 9.60 2014
126 Hong Kong SAR, China 9.40 2013
127 Trinidad and Tobago 9.20 2013
128 Zimbabwe 8.70 2011
128 Bangladesh 8.70 2010
130 Switzerland 8.60 2014
130 Malawi 8.60 2013
132 São Tomé and Principe 8.20 1991
133 Nigeria 8.10 2014
134 Honduras 8.00 2011
135 Norway 7.90 2014
136 Germany 7.70 2014
137 Ethiopia 7.30 2013
138 Singapore 7.00 2013
139 Monaco 6.90 2000
140 Cameroon 6.40 2010
141 Guatemala 6.30 2013
142 Bolivia 6.20 2011
143 Cuba 6.10 2010
144 Vietnam 6.00 2013
145 Japan 5.90 2014
146 Tanzania 5.80 2013
147 Bahrain 5.30 2012
147 Papua New Guinea 5.30 2000
147 Macao SAR, China 5.30 2014
150 Sierra Leone 5.20 2004
151 Liberia 5.10 2010
152 Lao PDR 5.00 1995
153 Rwanda 4.50 2012
154 Kazakhstan 3.90 2013
155 Burkina Faso 3.80 2006
156 Nepal 3.50 2008
157 Thailand 3.40 2013
158 Uganda 2.60 2013
158 Madagascar 2.60 2012
160 Benin 2.40 2010
161 Niger 2.30 2007
162 Qatar 1.10 2013
163 Guinea 1.00 2012
164 Burundi 0.70 1990
165 Cambodia 0.50 2010

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Development Relevance: Youth unemployment is an important policy issue for many economies. Young men and women today face increasing uncertainty in their hopes of undergoing a satisfactory transition in the labour market, and this uncertainty and disillusionment can, in turn, have damaging effects on individuals, communities, economies and society at large. Unemployed or underemployed youth are less able to contribute effectively to national development and have fewer opportunities to exercise their rights as citizens. They have less to spend as consumers, less to invest as savers and often have no "voice" to bring about change in their lives and communities. Widespread youth unemployment and underemployment also prevents companies and countries from innovating and developing competitive advantages based on human capital investment, thus undermining future prospects. Unemployment and total employment are the broadest indicators of economic activity as reflected by the labor market. The International Labour Organization(ILO) defines the unemployed as members of the economically active population who are without work but available for and seeking work, including people who have lost their jobs or who have voluntarily left work. Some unemployment is unavoidable. At any time some workers are temporarily unemployed - between jobs as employers look for the right workers and workers search for better jobs. Such unemployment, often called frictional unemployment, results from the normal operation of labor markets. In many developing countries women work on farms or in other family enterprises without pay and others work in or near their homes, mixing work and family activities during the day. Labor force statistics by gender is important to monitor gender disparities in unemployment patterns. In many developed economies, women have been increasingly acquiring higher education that has led to better-compensated, longer-term careers rather than lower-skilled, shorter-term jobs. However, access to good- paying occupations for women remains unequal in many occupations and countries around the world.

Limitations and Exceptions: Data on youth unemployment are drawn from labor force sample surveys and general household sample surveys, censuses, and official estimates, which are generally based on information from different sources and can be combined in many ways. Administrative records, such as social insurance statistics and employment office statistics, need to be treated with care because of their limitations in coverage. Labor force surveys generally yield the most comprehensive data because they include groups not covered in other unemployment statistics, particularly people seeking work for the first time. These surveys generally use a definition of unemployment that follows the international recommendations more closely than that used by other sources and therefore generate statistics that are more comparable internationally. But the age group, geographic coverage, and collection methods could differ by country or change over time within a country. For detailed information, consult the original source. The "youth" is defined as ages 15-24, but the lower age limit for young people in a country could be determined by the minimum age for leaving school, so age groups could differ across countries. Also, since this age group is likely to include school leavers, the level of youth unemployment varies considerably over the year as a result of different school opening and closing dates. The ILO definition of unemployment notwithstanding, reference periods, the criteria for people considered to be seeking work, and the treatment of people temporarily laid off or seeking work for the first time vary across countries. In many developing countries it is especially difficult to measure employment and unemployment in agriculture. The timing of a survey, for example, can maximize the effects of seasonal unemployment in agriculture. And informal sector employment is difficult to quantify where informal activities are not tracked. There may be persons not currently in the labour market who want to work but do not actively "seek" work because they view job opportunities as limited, or because they have restricted labour mobility, or face discrimination, or structural, social or cultural barriers. The exclusion of people who want to work but are not seeking work (often called the "hidden unemployed" or "discouraged workers") is a criterion that will affect the count of both women and men although women may have a higher probability of being excluded from the count of unemployed because they suffer more from social barriers overall that impede them from meeting this criterion. There are situations where the conventional means of seeking work are of limited relevance - for example, in developing economies where the informal economy is rampant and where the labour force is largely self-employed. In such cases, the standard definition of unemployment would greatly undercount the untapped human resources of a country and would give a picture of the labour market that was more positive than reality would warrant.

Statistical Concept and Methodology: The standard definition of unemployed persons is those individuals without work, seeking work in a recent past period, and currently available for work. Persons who did not look for work but have an arrangements for a future job are counted as unemployed. It is the labour force or the economically active portion of the population that serves as the base for this indicator, not the total population. Data are based on labor force sample surveys, general household sample surveys, censuses, official estimates, and administrative records.

Aggregation method: Weighted average

Periodicity: Annual

General Comments: Data are based on labor force sample surveys, general household sample surveys, censuses, official estimates, and administrative records. The data may differ from the ILO estimates.