World unemployment

Here are the world's worst nations for Employment (more than 10%), courtesy of The Economist:

South Africa - 25.5%
Poland - 13.0%
Colombia - 12.0%
Turkey - 11.4%
Belgium - 11.0%
Slovakia - 10.8%
Indonesia - 10.3%
Venezuela - 10.3%
Brazil - 10.1%

And the world's best (Less than 4.5%):

Iceland - 1.1%
Thailand - 1.5%
Norway - 2.7%
Switzerland - 2.7%
Singapore - 2.9%
Malaysia - 3.0%
South Korea - 3.4%
Mexico - 3.6%
Denmark - 3.7%
Japan - 3.8%
New Zealand - 3.8%
Taiwan - 4.0%
Australia - 4.2%
Hong Kong - 4.3%
Ireland - 4.3%
Austria - 4.4%
Luxembourg - 4.4%
USA - 4.5%

  • South Africa is surely in terrible trouble. The Economist does not mention Zimbabwe, where unemployment is more like 75%
  • Low unemployment nations can be either European social democracies or developed/developing Asian nations.
  • A person is more likely to get work in Mexico than in America.
  • New Zealand has a lower unemployment rate than Australia.
  • No Eastern European nation has low unemployment.
  • Islam does not seem to make any difference. Both Indonesia and Malaysia are predominately Muslim.
  • I want to live in Iceland.


CraigS said...

New Zealand has a less regulated workplace than we do as well.

theloves said...


This has s longer list which includes more poor countries. There may be different definitions of unemployed.

In Australia it refers to someone in receipt of govt unemployment benefits. Arguably the current govt has set the bar higher, so many poorly motivated people can't jump jump through the hoops and don't qualify, thereby lowering the official level.

Any country with over 40% obviously has a different defintion. Nauru is quoted as 90%, which is huge regardless of how it's measured. And maybe that's one good side to us establishing a detention centre there - any jobs there will be a bonus.


One Salient Oversight said...


I'm reasonably certain that the figures quoted in The Economist conform to International Labour Organization guidelines.

There would be no point in publishing these stats in such a publication if they weren't able to be compared.