Of which 5,546 are female
Labour: It’s been almost three years since Tshewang Dema, a BA graduate from India has been hunting for a job. After not qualifying for the civil service examinations, the 25-year-old from Trashigang tried her luck at the various private and corporate companies but has not yet made it through.
Tshewang Dema said the employment scenario in the country has reached a point where the level of qualification doesn’t carry any importance in getting a job. “Everywhere I looked for a job, they ask for working experience of more than three years,” she said. “When we don’t have a job, where are we supposed to get the experience from?”
According to the 12th National Labour Force Survey (NLFS) 2014, the national unemployment figure has decreased by 743 from 9,916 in 2013 to 9,173 in 2014.
The survey also found that youth (15-24 years) unemployment has decreased from 4,282 in 2013 to 3,631 in 2014.
However, the female unemployment figure was recorded at 5,546, which is 1.6 percent higher than the number of male unemployed at 3,627. The female youth unemployment was also recorded at 2,182 to 1,449 for male.
Of the total population estimated by the NLFS at 755,710 in 2014, 348,742 comprised the labour force of which 339,569 were employed in various sectors of the country.
In 2014, of the 339,569 employed individuals, 254,178 were employed in rural areas and only 85,393 were in the urban centers. A total of 130,634 male and 123,542 female were employed in the rural areas, the survey found.
According to the labour ministry, a total of 23,180 jobseekers registered with the ministry’s online job portal system from June 1, 2014 to October this year. It claimed to have placed 11,269 jobseekers in different government, private, corporation and NGOs including the overseas employment.
These numbers however do not include those like Kezang Lhamo, who is among the 11,911 unemployed individuals in the country today. Kezang is a 2014 graduate from Sherubtse College and she has been hunting for jobs for a year now. She said that with limited seats in the civil service, the only option left for graduates is to join the private and corporate companies.
However, the 24-year-old said that the recruitment procedure in most of the private companies is biased. “When they announce for vacancies, it says open for both male and female but during interviews, they only select the males,” she said. “Irrespective of the qualifications, the preference is always given to the male.”
Another jobseeker from the College of Science and Technology (CST), said there are not much vacancies for electrical engineers in the country. “The limited vacancies are pre-selected and we don’t have a chance in it; most organizations lack transparency when it comes to recruitment,” the 23-year-old said.
Yeshey Dema an IT graduate from India said that companies who announce vacancies at the labour ministry fail to follow up with the interview timing once they give out the vacancies. “There’s no response from the companies when we call them and ask for the next line of procedures,” she said. “They need to keep us in the loop on what would happen after the selection is done from the ministry.”
The NLFS statistics reveal that higher rates of unemployment are observed in the age group 15-19, 20-24 and 25-29 years for both male and female groups.
By Younten Tshedup