Employment rate for 2020 college graduates hits 10-year low: report

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Job seekers check employment information during a job fair held at the aT center in southern Seoul on Nov. 16, 2021, file photo. (Yonhap)

SEOUL, June 15 (Korea Bizwire)The employment rate for college graduates in 2020, the first year of the COVID-19 pandemic, slipped to the lowest level in 10 years, a South Korean business lobby said on Tuesday.

According to a report by the Korea Federation of Enterprises (KEF) based on Statistics Korea’s Population Economic Activity Survey, the employment rate of young college graduates was 37.1 percent. in 2020, the lowest in 10 years (2013-2022).

The non-economic activity rate of new university graduates stood at 41.4% in 2020, the highest in 10 years, raising fears of an inactive labor force.

The number of new graduates was 243,000 in 2020 and 241,000 in 2021, a level equivalent to around 80% of the ten-year average of 298,000.

KEF analyzed that these figures reflect the increase in the number of university students who are delaying their graduation due to the deterioration of the economic situation.

Among employed graduates graduating from universities in 2020 and after, the share of regular jobs has declined, while that of temporary jobs has increased, indicating a deterioration in job prospects.

“2020 college graduates faced a bigger job shock than graduates in other years and there’s a good chance they’ll be scarring for so long as a result of the shock.” said Lim Young-tae, head of employment policy team at KEF.

Lina Jang (linajang@koreabizwire.com)


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