Kenya is the second in the world in terms of unemployment rate at 40 per cent, 6 per cent shy from Congo, this according to latest Spectator Index survey.
This statistics heavily implicates the current Jubilee administration considering that unemployment was only at 17 per cent in 2012. This means, unemployment has surged 24 per cent points in the past 4 years of President Uhuru’s regime that ends in August when Kenyans head to polls.
While on campaign train ahead of 2013 polls, President Uhuru Kenyatta released a manifesto that indicated that 500,000 jobs will be created every year during his five year term, bringing the total to 2.5 million jobs
This is a huge blow to many Kenyans who hope to get employed this year if a recent survey by Ipsos Synovate is anything to go by.
According o the survey released just before New Year, 16 per cent of Kenyans want to get a better paying job this year, with 20 per cent of them planning to save more funds.
Although Kenyans are optimistic about 2017, the country’s economic landscape is promising otherwise.
Major foreign and local investors are either closing shop or downsizing to cut on operation costs. Last year, leading media houses-Royal Media Services and Nation Media Group (NMG) terminated contacts of over 100 employees, with NMG closing some of its radio stations.
The latter is expected to send home more employees this year, if the internal memo that leaked late last year s anything to go by.
Although the country celebrated when the Banking Act that capped interests at 4 per cent above the CBK rate of 10 per cent, its effect has started to take toll on the country’s banking sector.
Despite reporting an 18 per cent rise in after-tax profit for the nine months to September, Equity Bank sent home 400 workers in November last year. The bank plans to send more packing, thanks to its Eazzy Banking platforms that is aiming at branchless bank.
Family Bank which was rocked by closure rumors in early October has already asked workers to apply for voluntary retirement.
Recently, Nairobi Securities Exchange (NSE) posted negative results that showed that investors lost Sh500 billion.
The NSE statistics showed that only 10 companies gained in 2016 with over 10 leading blue chip companies recording over 50 per cent lose in 2016.
Poor results on NSE coupled by investor apathy ahead of this year’s general elections is likely to worsen the country’s employment status even as 50,000 university graduates are released into the job market every year.
South Africa, Greece, and Spain are some of major economies that posted high unemployment rate at 27,23 and 19 per cent respectively.
Qatar is leading the world in terms of employment rate. It has only 0.2 per cent unemployment according to Spectator Index survey.