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Graduate unemployment heads upwards

Released at: 10:45, 08/01/2016

Graduate unemployment heads upwards

As overall unemployment falls the number of university graduates out of work is on the rise.

by Le Diem

The number of jobless graduates is on the rise in Vietnam, reaching 225,500 in the third quarter of 2015, up 13 per cent and nearly 30 per cent, respectively, against the second quarter and the same period of 2014, according to figures from the Ministry of Labor, Invalids, and Social Affairs.

Overall unemployment fell 14 per cent to 1,128,700 compared to the second quarter, but figures for people with higher levels of education increased. Unemployed people with a university or higher education account for 20 per cent of the country’s jobless. Another 117,300 people who graduated from high school and have a lower university education are also out of work and the number is also increasing. Meanwhile, about 114,000 graduates and 135,000 high school graduates with a lower university education are doing manual jobs that require no certificate or diploma.

The rising joblessness among these people is evidence of the major gap between job market demand and supply, according to Dr. Nguyen Thi Lan Huong, Director of the Institute of Labor Science and Social Affairs. Of the 1 million or so students that finish high school every year, 90 per cent target entering university and the remaining 10 per cent apply for vocational training schools.

However, Mr Hoang Ngoc Vinh, Head of the Department of Occupational Education under the Ministry of Education and Training, refuted claims that the mushrooming of universities is to blame for the surging unemployment rate. He said that university graduates make up only 7 per cent of the workforce - much lower than 25-30 per cent found in developed countries. He believes their unemployment is due to the slowness of applying new and advanced technology in the country, which requires high-quality staff.

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