World Economy

Taiwan Unemployment Lower

Taiwan Unemployment LowerTaiwan Unemployment Lower

Taiwan’s unemployment fell slightly to 3.62% in May, down 0.01 percentage points from April and 0.23 points from a year earlier, government statistics showed Monday.

The jobless rate was the lowest for the month of May since 2000, when it dropped to 2.78%.

After seasonal adjustments, the jobless rate was 3.75% last month, the same as in April and March, the Directorate General of Budget, Accounting and Statistics (DGBAS) said, Focus Taiwan reported.

A total of 420,000 people were unemployed in May, 1,000 fewer than in April, according to the DGBAS.

The number of employed people rose by 9,000, or 0.08%, from a month earlier to 11.179 million, while the labor force participation rate rose by 0.01 percentage points to 58.52%.

Lo Yi-ling, deputy director of the DGBAS Department of Census, said that with the arrival of the graduation season, the unemployment rate in June is likely to increase by 0.2 to 0.4 percentage points.

In May, the jobless rate in the 20-24 age bracket fell 0.35 percentage points from April to 11.71%, while in the 25-29 age group it rose 0.16 percentage points to 6.43%.

The jobless rate for people with university degrees or higher decreased 0.07 percentage points month-on-month in May to 4.47%.

Meanwhile, Taiwan wants a free-trade deal with the EU, but there’s just one, rather large, problem: China. The pitch for a deal is based on Taiwan’s status as a massive exporter of computer tech, and its proximity to the Chinese mainland–now the EU’s second largest trading partner. China and Taiwan signed a historic “economic cooperation framework” agreement in 2010 and relations are improving–though still tense.