New insight on employment
A detailed dashboard and analysis of the Egyptian labour market with information on most-needed jobs across the country has been prepared by the Egyptian Centre for Economic Studies (ECES), a NGO, in cooperation with the National Bank of Egypt (NBE).
The quarterly online dashboard is easy to use and can be accessed on mobile phones. It provides detailed data on available vacancies for blue-collar and white-collar jobs classified according to gender, age, geographical distribution, type of work, and sector.
It aims to bring those wanting to work to companies offering vacancies and to help job-seekers understand the skills most in demand.
Egypt’s unemployment rate stands at 7.4 per cent, and according to Abla Abdel-Latif, executive director of ECES, around 62,000 jobs were made available between June and September 2021, not many when compared to the almost 250,000 jobs needed annually to absorb the country’s labour force.
The ECES study from which these figures come divided the country into six regions, made up of the capital (Cairo and Giza), Alexandria, the Canal Zone, the Delta, Upper Egypt, and the border regions. According to the study, around 71 per cent of jobs are created in the capital, while the border regions create less than one per cent of jobs.
Hisham Okasha, chair of the NBE, said that it was important to study the needs of the labour market and to identify jobs and areas of work for which there is demand. There was also a need to understand the enormous technological changes that overcame the labour market during the Covid-19 period.
He said that the gap between available jobs and the number of job-seekers was likely to expand. While there are some 600,000 university graduates annually in Egypt, there are also around five million children enrolled in kindergarten. This means that there will likely be an even larger gap between the number of university graduates and the number of jobs provided by the labour market in the future, he said.
Students must set goals early, determining their choices according to the demands of the labour market, Okasha said.
The ECES study showed that 71 per cent of white-collar jobs are concentrated in the capital. Openings for customer-service personnel represented around 19 per cent of available white-collar jobs, followed by information technology and programming jobs. The jobs least available were those in the travel and tourism sector.
Meanwhile, 40 per cent of blue-collar jobs were for marketing and sales personnel. These differ from white-collar sales jobs in that they do not require higher education, whereas white-collar sales personnel require higher-education degrees.
*A version of this article appears in print in the 18 November, 2021 edition of Al-Ahram Weekly