Unemployment rate fell from 11.2 percent to 10.9 percent for February, a 0.3 percent decline when compared to February 2015. The number of unemployed fell by 2,000, according to data released on Monday by the Turkish Statistical Institute (TurkStat). The unemployment rate also improved compared to the previous month's rate of 11.1 percent.
According to TurkStat, people were more willing to work in February, which pushed up the labor force participation rate. The number of people aged 15 and over seeking a job stood at 29.68 million in February, showing an increase of 877,000 people compared to the same period last year. Thus the fall in the number of people unemployed can be attributed to some extent to the increase of nearly 877,000 in the labor force over the last year.
The labor force participation rate is at 50.8 percent, which is up 0.7 percent for the same period. Moreover the youth unemployment rate, representing the group aged 15 to 24, improved considerably with a 1.4-point decrease to 18.6 percent.
Turkey's latest unemployment rate of 10.9 percent is only slightly above the eurozone (EA19) unemployment rate of 10.3 percent for February, which is the lowest rate recorded since August 2011, according to data from Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union.
Among the EU member states, the lowest unemployment rate in the same period was observed in Germany (4.3 percent), while the highest unemployment rates were observed in South European countries such as Greece (24.0 percent in December 2015), Spain (20.4 percent), Portugal (12.3 percent) and Croatia (15.1 percent). Evidently, Turkey's unemployment rate stands much lower below those of the eurozone countries in southern Europe.
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