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Macao’s unemployment rate returns to pre-pandemic levels 

Official data shows that the general unemployment rate from February to April 2024 was 1.9 percent
  • Employment in non-gaming sectors saw an increase over this period, reflecting the government’s efforts to diversify the SAR’s economy

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ARTICLE BY

PUBLISHED

READING TIME

Less than 1 minute Minutes

Unemployment numbers in Macao have fallen back to figures that resemble those from the period between December 2019 and February 2020, according to the latest Employment Survey from the Statistics and Census Service (also known by its Portuguese initials DSEC). 

Figures show that from February to April 2024, the city’s general unemployment rate – that is, the rate for both non-resident workers and locals – stood at almost 2 percent. The rate among local residents only was recorded as 2.5 percent, a fall of 0.2 percent in comparison to the period between January and March 2024.

DSEC indicated that “both measures returned to the corresponding levels of December 2019 to February 2020.” 

According to Henry Chun, a University of Macau business economics professor, Macao’s unemployment rate has reached a “period of stability.” He said: “The performance in 2019 was relatively ideal, with the local resident unemployment rate at around 2.3 percent. The current level of 2.5 percent is pretty much the same.” 

[See more: Macao’s unemployment rate holds level during the first quarter]

The underemployment figure in the current period meanwhile dropped to 1.4 percent, a decrease of 0.1 percent. 

The figures showed that there were a total 379,700 individuals employed, an increase of 1,200 in comparison to the last three-month period. Employed residents made up 284,400 of this total, a rise of 400 in relation to the previous period. In both cases, DSEC said that the surge was “mainly driven by employment growth in non-gaming industries.” 

The number of unemployed individuals, meanwhile, amounted to 7,400, a drop of 600. Unemployment among young people between 16 and 34 also fell for the sixth straight three-month period. 

Non-gaming industries saw an increase in their employment rate from February to April 2024, with the financial activities, as well as the construction industries both witnessing an increase. Employment in real estate and business activities, however, fell over this period. 

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