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ILO: Brazil to have 14 million unemployed people in 2022

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Homeless people in Sao Paulo. Photo: Casa da photo/Shutterstock

The International Labor Organization (ILO) projects that Brazil will have 14 million unemployed people in 2022, well above the level seen before the coronavirus hit the country. In a report on the global labor market released this Monday, the organization stated that employment in the country is unlikely to return to pre-pandemic levels until at least 2024. According to the report, Brazil had 12.5 million unemployed people in Q4 2019. In 2020, this figure rose to 13.2 million, and to 14.3 million last year. The ILO forecasts a reduction to 14 million this year and 13.6 million in 2023.

Moreover, in 2020, Brazil had a deficit of hours worked equivalent to 11.8 million full-time jobs. That gap was more than halved last year, and is expected to fall to 2.2 million jobs by the end of this year.

Brazil’s workforce participation rate also tumbled during the pandemic. Measuring the percentage of working age citizens in employment or looking for a job, the rate fell from 62.6 percent to 57.3 percent in 2020. The ILO expects this percentage to recover somewhat this year, creeping back up to 59.9 percent.

In a Latin America-wide analysis, the ILO warns of climbing labor informality across the region, dismantling formal employment. According to the organization, informal employment has accounted for more than 70 percent of job creation since 2020 in Brazil, Argentina, Mexico, and Peru.

In addition, temporary work has also increased during the pandemic. In Brazil, it went from accounting for 22 percent of all jobs in the country in Q2 2020 to 37 percent in Q1 2021.