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EghtesadOnline: Iran’s unemployment rate, the proportion of jobless population of ages 10 years and above, stood at 11.7% in the third quarter of the current Iranian year (Sept. 23-Oct. 22, 2018), indicating no change compared with the same period of last year.

A total of 3,174,042 Iranians were unemployed in the third quarter, the latest report by the Statistical Center of Iran showed.

Men's unemployment rate stood at 10.1% while women's joblessness hovered around 18%, as over 2.19 million men and 980,578 million women of ages 10 and above were jobless in the third quarter.   

The unemployment rate was at 13.2% for urban areas (2.64 million people) and 7.6% for rural areas (528,994 people), Financial Tribune reported.

The unemployment rate in autumn was lower compared to the summer rate of 12.2%.



Labor Force Participation

SCI has put Q3 labor force participation rate—the proportion of the population of ages 10 years and above that is economically active either employed or looking for work—at 40.5% or 27.09 million people, registering a 0.6% rise year-on-year. 

Economic participation rates for men and women were 64.4% and 16.4% respectively in Q3. 

SCI reports that 21.63 million men and 5.46 million women ages 10 and above were economically active in the third quarter of the current year, that is they were either employed or looking for a job.



Youth Unemployment

SCI provides two figures for the youth unemployment rate: the proportion of the population between the ages of 15 and 24 and those between the ages of 15 and 29.   

The youth unemployment rate of ages 15 and 24, stood at 27% in Q3, posting a 1.3% decrease while the unemployment rate of those between 15 and 29 years, stood at 24.5%, posting a 0.5% decline compared with the same period of last year.




Underemployment, the condition in which people in a labor force are employed for less than 44 hours of service per week, stood at 11.7% and was higher among men compared to women and among those living in rural areas. 

The underemployment rates of men and women stood at 12.9% and 6.3%, respectively. This is while underemployment rate of urban areas was 10% and it was 16.2% in rural areas in fall. 

In the meanwhile, 36.5% of country’s job holders worked 49 hours or more per week, registering a decline of 0.9% Y-O-Y.



Graduate Unemployment

The share of higher education unemployment from the total rate of unemployment was 40.5% in Q3, which indicates an increase of 3.4% compared with the same quarter of last year. 

The unemployment rates of male and female graduates stood at 28.1% and 68.2% respectively, while higher education unemployment rates were 43.6% in urban areas and 25.3% in rural areas during the period.  



Employment Rate

Employment is defined as persons of working age engaged in any activity to produce goods or provide services for pay or profit, whether at work during the reference period or not at work due to a temporary absence from a job, or to working-time arrangement.

The total employment rate of Q3 was 35.7% (23.92 million). Employment rates for men and women were 57.9% and 13.4%, respectively, as 19.44 million men and 4.48 million women were employed in fall. 


The unemployment rate in autumn was lower compared to the rate of 12.2% in summer



The employment rate was 34.5% or 17.46 million in urban areas and 39.4% or 6.46 million in rural areas.

The employment rate of university graduates stood at 23.9% of the total employed population, male and female graduate employment was 20.6% and 38.5%, respectively. Graduate employment rates in urban and rural areas stood at 30.2% and 7% of the total population of job-holders respectively. 



Sectoral View

The services sector employed 49.9% of the Iranian employed population (11.93 million), 0.1% less than the same quarter of last year, whereas industrial and agricultural sectors provided 32.9% and 17.2% of the employed population with jobs respectively. 

Over 7.87 million were employed in industrial sector, indicating no change over the same period of last year and 4.1 million worked in agriculture, posting a 0.1% growth year-on-year. 

The services sector employed 9.63 million men and 2.3 million women in fall, of which over 6.52 million men and 1.35 million women were working in the industrial sector and 3.27 million of men and 827,741 women worked in the agriculture sector in Q3. 

Services sector accounted for 59.5% or 10.38 million of jobs in urban areas and 23.9% or 1.54 million of jobs in rural areas. The industrial sector made up 34.4% or six million of the jobs in urban areas and 29.1% or 1.87 million of the jobs in rural areas whereas 6.1% or 1.07 million of the total jobs in urban areas and 47% or 3.03 million of the jobs in rural areas were in the agriculture sector.  



Provincial View

Semnan Province registered the lowest unemployment rate of 6.6% among all Iranian provinces in Q3 while Kermanshah Province had the highest unemployment rate of 18.2%. Tehran Province, wherein lies the capital city, registered a 12.4% unemployment rate.

Nine provinces, namely Semnan (6.6%), Markazi (6.9%), Hamedan (7.3%), Zanjan (7.5%), South Khorasan (8.2%), Fars (8.7%), Ardabil (8.7%), Mazandaran (8.8%) and Khorasan Razavi (9%), registered single-digit unemployment rates in fall.

Khorasan Razavi registered the highest labor force participation rate (46.9%) and Sistan-Baluchestan had the lowest labor force participation rate (32%), whereas Tehran registered a 39% participation rate in Q3.  

Khorasan Razavi registered the highest employment rate of 42.7% while Sistan-Baluchestan filed the lowest employment rate of 27.1% in Q3 among all Iranian provinces. 


Iran Unemployment