22.3% Unemployed Are Tertiary Graduates – GSS

Prof. Samuel Kobina Annim


A significant proportion (22.3%) of individuals who face unemployment from the first quarter of 2022 to the third quarter of 2023 had tertiary education qualifications.

Additionally, nearly half (48.8%) of those who experienced unemployment during these 21 months had completed secondary education.

This data corresponds to 4,565 individuals with tertiary education and 9,987 individuals with secondary education who encountered unemployment over seven quarters.

These findings were revealed in the Annual Household Income and Expenditure Survey: Quarter 3 2023 Labour Statistics Bulletin, released on Wednesday, February 21, 2024, by the Government Statistician, Prof. Samuel Kobina Annim.

The report highlighted a year-on-year increase in unemployment rates in the Western (7.8%), Greater Accra (5.0%), and North East (3.7%) regions.

Conversely, the Northern (-6.3%), Savannah (-2.9%), and Bono East (-2.9%) regions experienced the most significant declines in unemployment rates over the same period.

Prof. Annim emphasized the necessity of addressing unemployment challenges differently across various regions, particularly in the Greater Accra and Ashanti regions, which consistently reported higher unemployment rates than the national average throughout the seven quarters.

Moreover, Greater Accra stood out as the only region consistently recording a youth Not in Employment, Education, or Training (NEET) rate higher than the national average across all quarters.

In the first three quarters of 2023, approximately 77.4% of unemployed individuals were youths aged 15 to 35 (1,374,329).

The NEET rate among youths increased by 3.6 percentage points between quarters two and three in 2023, reversing a previous downward trend.

Prof. Annim stressed the importance of interventions targeting employment opportunities during educational periods and emphasized the distinction between work and employment as key focal points for addressing unemployment challenges.

Labor mobility statistics from the fourth quarter of 2022 to the third quarter of 2023 indicated that out of 530,000 individuals who transitioned from employment to unemployment status between these periods, more than half (280,000) remained unemployed in the second quarter of 2023.

Additionally, among the 540,000 individuals who shifted from being outside the labor force to unemployment status between the fourth quarter of 2022 and the first quarter of 2023, approximately 410,000 (about three-quarters) remained unemployed in the second quarter of 2023.

Nearly 200,000 individuals experienced an unemployment spell lasting at least 12 months between the first quarter of 2022 and the third quarter of 2023.

Prof. Annim urged institutions to enhance the use of administrative data to address unemployment spells and labor transitions effectively.


By Prince Fiifi Yorke