Zim Unemployment Rate At 10,7% – ZIMSTAT

The Zimbabwe National Statistics Agency (ZIMSTAT) says that Zimbabwe’s unemployment rate is 10.7%.

Such a statistic will no doubt upset those who pretty much fancy using 80% or so as a benchmark.

ZIMSTAT came up to this figure this way via its director-general Mr Mutasa Dzinotizei:

Unemployment is defined as all persons above a specified age, who during a reference period were without work or were not in paid employment or self employed. It refers to people who are available for work, people who are seeking work and have taken specific steps to seek for work or self employment

On the basis of the 2011 Labour Force Survey unemployment rates in Zimbabwe, using broad and strict definitions were 10, 7 percent and 5, 4 percent respectively. These compare with the 9 percent and 4, 4 percent rates in 2004.

The admission is that bulk of those considered employed are not in the formal employment sector. ZIMSTAT says that everyone who contributes to goods and service to the GDP should be considered employment. What they are essentially saying is that the airtime seller who would generally be put under unemployed is actually gainfully employed and provides a service that lends to the GDP.

The worrying statistic is that 4 out of 5 unemployed people were between the age of 15 and 34.

What do we think? While we do not doubt ZIMSTAT’s definition, we also are pretty skeptical of a stat that says it is over 80% or whatever. We think somewhere between those two lies the truth. Would be interesting if a comprehensive survey was done. It is much easier in other countries because individuals file their own tax returns. In Zimbabwe, not so much.

With information from The Chronicle

  • P

    The definition is not just ZIMSTAT’s but is the generally acknowledged international benchmark. I find it unlikely that Zimbabwe has an unemployment rate comparable to America and so much lower than South Africa (+-25% narrow definition some say as high as 40% broad definition). How is an airtime seller unemployed by any definition? He is simply employed in the informal sector. I believe a more interesting question would be what percentage of respondents are subsistence farmers who are also not considered unemployed.

  • Mr_popular

    If these statd were true, we employed in other countries should be working in zim! These stats are either severly distorded or a lie, how do crossborder traders be classified as employed? One wonders!

    • They make an income and contribute to the GDP in providing a service. So how can they not?