North Macedonia's unemployment rate fell slightly to 16% in the first quarter of 2021 from 16.2% in the same period a year earlier, the statistics office's labour force survey indicated on June 4.
The jobless rate has been constantly falling in the last few years, but the pace slowed in 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic. A slight growth of the jobless rate was recorded in the second and the third quarter of last year. The country still has one of the highest unemployment rates in Europe.
From the previous quarter, the jobless rate ticked down by 0.1 pp, after falling 0.4 pp in the previous quarter.
The labour force in North Macedonia numbered 943,964 people, of whom 793,121 were employed, while 150,843 were unemployed in the first quarter, according to the latest statistical office data.
Thus the activity rate in the period under review was 56%, and the employment rate was 47.1%.
The finance ministry recently revealed a new medium-term fiscal strategy, which foresees the jobless rate to gradually drop from a projected 15.8% in 2021 to 8.6% in 2026, while the employment rate is expected to increase to 54.3% in five years.