Youth unemployment in way of Lithuania’s OECD membership

DELFI / Kiril Čachovskij

While youth unemployment has shrunk in Lithuania, to 15.3% last year, it is still well above the 10% level it was before the 2008 recession.

Moreover, youth employment in Lithuania, at 28.6%, is more than 10 points bellow the OECD average, 40%.

With ageing population and shrinking labour force, Minister Pabedinskienė insists that the state must work harder to include young people into the labour market.

Some of the measures she mentions are cutting the minimum wage for young people and raising the tax-exempt income share.

“An employment bill is currently making its way in parliament, I hope that the package will be adopted in the spring session,” Pabedinskienė told LRT television. “Our target is to have youth unemployment below 10%, which I think is very realistic.”

She adds that besides legislation, foreign investment and creation of new jobs will also help alleviate the problem.

“Unless we tackle the problems that the OECD keeps talking about, namely unemployment and social security, then the process [of membership] might be long,” Pabedinskienė said.

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