Caribbean Nations With The Highest Unemployment


By NAN Business Editor

News Americas, NEW YORK, NY, Fri. May 20, 2016: Joblessness continues to be a big problem in several Caribbean nations. In the Caribbean, youth unemployment rates are among the highest in the world, a recent Caribbean Development Bank report showed. Here are ten Caribbean nations with the highest unemployment rates overall according to latest data:

1: Grenada

Grenada has the highest unemployment rate in the Caribbean region. Data as of 2014 shows that Grenada has an unemployment rate of 28.9 percent the government of Grenada says. This marked a drop from 32.5 percent in 2013. Youth unemployment is over 50 percent.

2: St. Lucia

Coming in at second on the list of Caribbean nations with the most unemployed is St. Lucia which according to latest data has an unemployment rate of almost 25 percent. Unemployment in Saint Lucia rose by 8 percent during the 2008-2014 period, and joblessness among young people aged 15 to 24 rose by 15 percent.

3: Dominica

Dominica has an unemployment rate of 23 percent according to latest data available with young people between the ages 15-24 especially impacted. The rate of unemployment for poor households is 40 percent while non-poor households’ rate of unemployment is 16 percent.

4: St. Vincent and the Grenadines

St. Vincent and the Grenadines has an unemployment rate of 18.80 percent according to latest data. In St. Vincent and the Grenadines, one in four young people between 18 and 29 years is unemployed.

5: Jamaica

Jamaica ranks in the fifth spot on the Caribbean nations with the most unemployed. The unemployment rate for youth is considerably higher at 30.3 percent, and the average unemployment rate for women is double that for men: 18.5 versus 9.3 percent, according to the World Bank.

6: The Bahamas

The Bahamas’ unemployment rate stood at 16.2 percent according to the Bahamas Department of Statistics for 2014, released this year. That’s 31,665 people unemployed and most are women than men.

7: Dominican Republic

The Dominican Republic has an unemployment rate of 14.9 percent percent as of 2015 with more women being among the jobless.  Youth unemployment is in excess of 31 percent.

8: Belize

Belize came in the ninth on the list with an unemployment rate of 14.2 percent as of 2013, the Statistical Institute of Belize says. Most of the unemployed on the island are women.

9: Puerto Rico

Latest data available as of 2013 shows Puerto Rico’s unemployment rate at 11.70 percent with men and young people between the ages 15-24 especially among the jobless.

10: Guyana

Guyana rounds out the top 10 with an unemployment rate put at 11.10 percent as of 2013 that includes a whopping 40 percent of youth unemployment.

Prakash Loungani and Zidong An, writing in the blog: “Unemployment: Troubles Ahead for Emerging Markets” recently offered some much needed advise to governments. They noted that “restoring the health of labor markets in the Latin America and Caribbean region will require a return to stronger growth as well as more targeted measures to tackle barriers in the creation of private sector jobs, which may vary from country to country.”

“In particular,” they added. “It would be useful to provide assistance for job seekers through a mix of placement services, retraining and—in some instances—subsidies to encourage formal sector employment.”

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