VGP - The jobless rate fell to 2.29% in the first six months of 2012 in comparision with 2.58% in the same period last year, according to a senior official from the General Statistics Office.
Head of the Population and Labour Department under the General Statistics Office Nguyen Thi Xuan Mai said that in the first half of 2012, unemployment in urban areas dropped to 3.62% from 3.96% in the same period last year and in rural areas to 1.65% from 2.02%.
Meanwhile, in the first half of the year, 3.06% of labourers were under-employed, Ms. Mai said. The figure was 1.92% in urban areas and 3.6% in rural areas.
The unemployment rate in Viet Nam is similar to other countries in the region and much lower than those in many developing and developed countries such as South Africa (25%), Iran (11.5%), the Netherlands (9.6%), Spain (21.6%), and France (9.3%).
Vietnam now has 47.1 million people of working age, up 0.6% against the same period last year. Of that total, female workers account for 46.3%.
In an effort to boost social welfare, the Prime Minister has authorised favourable loans for poor students.
Meanwhile, the monthly minimum wage has increased from VND830,000 (US$39) to VND1.05 million (US$47)./.