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AfricaMoney | September 21, 2017

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Unemployment rate lower at 7.5%; wage rate index inches up 5.4% in Q4 2014

Unemployment rate lower at 7.5%; wage rate index inches up 5.4% in Q4 2014

The Mauritian labour force consisted of 538,900 individuals in the last quarter of 2014, representing an increase of 4200 against the corresponding quarter in 2013. (Image: europeanbusinessreview.com)

The island economy’s unemployment rate stood at 7.5% for the last quarter of 2014 against 7.6% in the third quarter of 2014, according to data released by Statistics Mauritius.

Among the unemployed, 57% were females and 43% males and 40% of unemployed were below 25 years of age.

The Mauritian labour force consisted of 538,900 individuals in the last quarter of 2014, representing an increase of 4200 against the corresponding quarter in 2013. The data also showed that the activity of the total working population of 582,900, who are above 16 years of age, is 60.4%.

Education and unemployment was lowest among those with tertiary qualification, and showed a declining trend while the rate remained highest among the population with the Higher School Certificate. Among the youth as well, the Higher School Certificate holders have the highest unemployment level.

Further analysis shows that some 5,400 people in the labour force, or 12% of the total working population, had not reached the Certificate of Primary Education (CPE) level or equivalent and a further 16,800 ((38%) did not have the Cambridge School Certificate (SC) or equivalent.

Regarding the inactive population, which made up of 118,900 males and 262,900 females, the inactive males comprising around 46% were ‘retired or old persons’ and 33% were students; for females, 60% were homemakers, 16% were students and 14% were ‘retired or old persons’.

Moving to the wage rate index published by Statistics Mauritius, the wage rate index measuring the change in price of labour for the last quarter of 2014 revealed that the wage rate remained the same compared to the previous quarter of 2014 as increases in wage rate in some industries were offset by decreases in other segments, resulting in no change.

When compared to the same quarter of 2013, which shows the trend of wages in Mauritius for the period of a year, the index is encouraging as figures for the wage rate index increased by 6.2 points – representing an increase of 5.4%.

A detailed analysis showed that wage rate for ‘electricity, gas, steam & air conditioning supply’ recorded the highest increase of 21.4%, followed by a rise in ‘Information & Communication’ by 11.6%, ‘arts, entertainment & recreation’ inched up by 10.2%, ‘financial & insurance activities’ rose by 6.5%, water supply, sewerage, waste management & remediation activities climbed by 5.9% and other services went up by 5.2%.
On the loser’s corner, the construction sector posted a decline in the wage rate index by 0.9%.

The government sector wages account for 32% of the wage rate index and this section comprises of Ministries, Government departments and agencies operating under them, the municipalities, district councils and the Rodrigues Regional Assembly.

The public sector reported an increase in wage rates by 5.1% to reach 130.6 in 2014. This sector contributed 2.0 index points to the rise of 6.2 index points in the overall index for 2014.

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