The National Economic and Social Development Council (NESDC) reported on Wednesday that job figures improved in the second quarter of 2021, but that unemployment remains high due to the COVID-19 crisis.
NESDC secretary-general Danucha Pichayanan said second-quarter employment rose by 2% year on year, with farm and non-farm employment rising 2.4% and 1.8%, respectively. Rising employment in the construction, hotels, restaurants and logistics sectors was offset by falls in manufacturing and retail. A gradual rise was seen in export businesses, such as computers, electronics, rubber products and auto manufacturing.
He said, however, that unemployment remained high, with 730,000 people or 1.89% jobless. Of them, 290,000 were new graduates and 440,000 had been laid off. The 29 provinces under lockdown measures have 10.2 million workers but only 5.5% of these were able to work from home.
Mr. Danucha said the government must implement more intensive assistance measures than in the past, such as helping to support wages for entrepreneurs, to maintain employment, and providing additional subsidies to self-employed workers who are unable to work normally due to the outbreak control measures or who must quarantine. This is partly to prevent displacement, which would make it impossible to control the outbreak effectively. (NNT)