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Official: Women's unemployment in Iran twice that of men


An Iranian labor official said in Tehran on Monday that in Iran the unemployment rate among women is twice that of men, IRNA reported.

Speaking at a seminar on women employment, Deputy Labor Minister for Planning and Policy Sadeq Bakhtiari said the Iranian labor market has two special features: one is a low level of labor force participation and the other is extremely low level of women participation."

He further said the level of women participation in the labor market is one-sixth of men. "Conversely, women participation in labor market is 11.5 percent for the whole country and 10.2 in larger cities," he stated.

The country's unemployment rate is 11.8 percent, while women unemployment stands at 21.2 percent, the labor official underlined. Youth unemployment is also a major policy challenge for officials.

Thirty-one percent of Iranian youth in the 15 to 29 years age group, are either unemployed or lack a suitable job, said an official here on Saturday.

Presidential Advisor and Head of the National Youth Organization Rahim Ebadi told an international seminar on youth unemployment that growth rate among the young population in Iran stands at about 13.2 percent a year and if the trend continues, in the next three years more than 52 percent of the youth will be unemployed.

Ebadi said the country has not been able to meet demands of the youth due to rapid growth in population.

The official said the youth, aged 15 to 19, account for 39 percent of the country's active work force and the unemployment rate stands at about 34 percent among the age groups of 15 to 19 years old and at about 16 percent among the 25 to 29 years age group.

He said that about 320,000 graduates apply for jobs, raising concerns they would not find adequate jobs.

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