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Research: Share of economically inactive women in Russia higher than in EU

March 21, 2016, 18:28 UTC+3
1 pages in this article

MOSCOW, March 21. /TASS/. The fraction of 20-24 years old young people who are neither in employment nor studying in Russia is equal to the average EU level of 17%. According to the recent study, directed by professor Elena Varshavsky from Higher School of Economics (HSE), the unemployment rate for Russian young men is lower that for their EU-peers, but Russian young women are in contrast more economically inactive than in Europe.

This peculiarity might be caused by an early childbearing age in Russia along with fewer chances to find a part-time employment on the Russian labor market. Although the average age of bearing the first child is gradually growing, the Russian women on the average become mothers earlier than European women and hence do not involved in the working activity on the market.

During the economic recession period, it is young people who leave the labor market first and become economically inactive, having no work and no inventions for education or professional retraining. In the recent study of professor Varshavskaya in the journal "Statistics", the NEET group ("Not in Employment, Education or Training") of young people aged from 15 to 24 years has been analyzed. The data have been taken from the surveys carried by European statistical service Eurostat and by Russia, the corresponding agency in Russia. From the Russian side, around 720-750 thousand participate take part in the inquiry every year. This guarantees the reliable representation of population having different ages, sex, and living location (rural/urban).

Russia and Europe: economic activity of young people

In the EU countries, the NEET rate among young people in the EU varies significantly. In some countries, especially in Southern European (Spain, Greece, Italy, Croatia, Bulgaria), more than a quarter of young people are unemployed. On the contrary, in the Netherlands, Germany, and Austria, the level of NEET among twenty-year-old young people is less than 10 %. The corresponding level in Russia is 17.1% being in the middle of the European scale.

It is noteworthy that in Russia only 13.1 % of young men belong to NEET as compared to the European level of 17.8 %. However, as in many other countries, women in Russia contribute more to the NEET than men. The level of NEET among young Russian women already exceeds European by 2.4% reaching 21.4% in total.

Additionally, the proportion of Russian women who are not just temporary out of work, but basically not going to look for a job or start their education is higher than in EU (14.4 % vs. 10.6 %). According to prof. Varshavsky, this situation might be rationalized by the fact, that in contrast to Europe, Russia belongs to the group of countries with an early childbearing. This emphasizes the importance of combining employment and family responsibilities for young mothers including part-time or remote work possibilities.

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