Nearly 20,000 Bahamians unemployed according to Labour Force Survey

Nearly 20,000 Bahamians unemployed according to Labour Force Survey
(FILE PHOTO)

NASSAU, BAHAMAS — The country’s latest Labour Force Survey has revealed that the national unemployment rate stands at 8.8 percent, with just over 19,000 persons unemployed in the country at the time of the survey.

The survey which was conducted last month by the Bahamas National Statistical Institute is the first labour force survey since November 2019 and included the islands of New Providence, Grand Bahama, Abaco, Bimini, North Eleuthera, Long Island, and San Salvador.

According to the survey results, the total labour force in the country in May was 219,465, with women comprising 54 percent of the labour force, while men represented 46 percent.

When broken down by age group, the survey indicated that nearly one-quarter (23 percent) of the labour force falls within the 25-34-year-old category.

Of the labour force, 55 percent had completed secondary school, while 4 percent had received primary level education or had no education at all, and 26 percent had completed university.

Among the 219,465 individuals in the labour force, 26 percent held a bachelor’s degree or higher, while 21 percent had no qualifications.

The Bahamas National Statistical Institute (BNSI) noted: “The Employed Labour Force recorded 200,175 individuals. When examining employment status, approximately two-thirds (61 percent) were engaged in the private sector, while 21 percent were government employees. Abaco had the highest percentage of self-employed individuals (28 percent), whereas both New Providence and Grand Bahama registered 16 percent.”

The “Hotel and Restaurant” industry accounted for 17 percent of employed persons, while the “Community, Social and Personal Service” industry, which includes public service, police service, and domestic service, remained the largest sector, employing 39 percent of the workforce.

The survey revealed that there were 19,290 unemployed individuals in the country, resulting in a national unemployment rate of 8.8 percent. Specifically, the unemployment rate was 8.9 percent in New Providence, 7.1 percent on Abaco, and 10.8 percent on Grand Bahama.

Overall, the unemployment rate for men was higher at 9.1 percent, compared to 8.5 percent for women.

According to the survey, the number of discouraged workers in the country stands at 2,035, with 1,235 on New Providence, 200 on Grand Bahama, and 185 on Abaco. Discouraged workers, as defined by the International Labour Organization (ILO), are individuals without work, available for work, but not actively seeking employment due to a lack of hope regarding their job prospects.