The number of unemployed in Asia is likely to increase by about 7.2 million from 2008 to this year.
This figure, according to the International Labour Organisation (ILO), is at a rate of 5.1 per cent, with women and youth hard-hit by rising unemployment.
It said that based on a scenario on economic growth projections, together with labour market impacts from prior economic downturns, the number of workers in vulnerable employment in Asia could rise by nearly 21 million while the number of extreme working poor could climb by over 52 million, this year alone.
The most pessimistic scenario sees the number of unemployed in the region surging by 23.3 million, to a rate of 5.9 per cent, while vulnerable employment could grow by an alarming 60 million, notes ‘The Fallout in Asia: Assessing Labour Market Impacts and National Policy Responses to the Global Financial Crisis´ report.
The report was prepared by the Bangkok-based ILO’s Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific for deliberation at a forum in Manila involving ministries of labour and finance, senior United Nations, World Bank and government officials, workers and employers’ representatives from more than 10 Asia and the Pacific countries, starting on Wednesday.
A dramatic increase in working poverty of more than 140 million by this year is projected under this scenario, representing a regression of the Asia and the Pacific region to the working poverty rate of 2004.