Employment in Europe 1999


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Employment in Europe
Employment & social affairs
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European Commission Employment in Europe 1999
Employment &. social affairs t and European Social Fund
European Commission
Directorate-General for Employment, Industrial Relations
and Social Affairs
Manuscript completed in August 1999 The contents of this publication do not necessarily reflect the opinion or position of
the European Commission, Directorate-General for Employment, Industrial Relations
and Social Affairs.
If you are interested in receiving the electronic newsletter "5mail" from the European
Commission's Directorate-General for Employment, Industrial Relations and Social
Affairs, please send an e-mail to 5mail@dg5.cec.be . The newsletter is published on a
regular basis in English, French and German.
A great deal of additional information on the European Union is available on the Internet.
It can be accessed through the Europa server (http://europa.eu.int).
Cataloguing data can be found at the end of this publication.
Luxembourg: Office for Official Publications of the European Communities, 1999
ISBN 92-828-7574-1
© European Communities, 1999
Reproduction is authorised provided the source is acknowledged.
Printed in Belgium
During my period as Commissioner related social issues. That goal has regions of the Union; the contrasting,
—which began in January 1993 — I been realised. The Reports have job creation patterns in the United
have seen the issue of employment established a large, loyal and influ­ States and European labour mar­
take on an increasingly important ential readership, and I am sure kets; job quality and wage develop­
political profile within the Euro­ they will continue to do so in the ments within the Union and the
pean Union. future. impact of an ageing population on
Europe's labour markets.
I am pleased to have been able to Like its predecessors, this 1999
play my part in taking the Euro­ Report serves two main purposes. The Report assesses how the ten
pean policy debate and action for­ The first is to provide a comprehen­ Central and Eastern European can­
ward during this period — from the sive report on recent developments didate countries are facing up to the
era when we were developing the in employment in Europe. This employment challenge of preparing
policy ideas which enriched the year's Report takes this first aspect for Union membership. With up to
White Paper on Growth, competi­ somewhat further and looks at the half of their exports committed to the
tiveness, employment, through to ups and downs of employment per­ Union, the Report considers the
the establishment of the new formance in recent years, not only implications for future employment
Employment Chapter in the in the Union but also in the United developments of their success in cop­
Amsterdam Treaty. Now we have States and Japan. One notable and ing with structural change, trade
both the political commitment for disturbing fact is that, despite the liberalisation and rationalisation.
treating employment as a matter of success of some individual Member
common European concern and the States in improving their perfor­ In looking at the balance of eco­
operational machinery for ensuring mance over recent years, employ­ nomic and employment develop­
effective inter-governmental policy ment in the Union as a whole in
ments across Europe's regions, the
cooperation on employment. 1998 had still not regained the level
Report throws light on the state of
of 1991 before the onset of the reces­
preparation of Europe's labour
sion in the early 1990s. I am pleased, too, that these policy markets for full Economic and Mon­
developments have been based on etary Union and on how far prob­
the solid analytical foundations The second purpose of the Report is lems of structural imbalance still
that were established by the to investigate specific labour mar­ need to be addressed across the 200
Employment in Europe Reports. ket topics and issues which are of or more regions of the Union.
Since this is my final year as Com­ particular policy concern. In these
missioner, and my last Employ­ cases, new research and new analy­ Some of the major differences
ment in Europe Report, I would like sis enable us to gain better insights between the United States and
to take this opportunity to thank all and understanding of what is hap­ European Union labour markets
of the staff and researchers who pening in the labour market so that are well known — not least the
have worked over the years to pro­ more effective policies can be devel­ much higher levels of employment,
duce such consistently high quality oped to improve Europe's overall notably in services and notably
work. employment performance. among women, in the United
States. The Report goes further in
The Commission's original inten­ This year's Report looks at a number its analysis, though. Using newly
tion was to provide an authoritative of important issues: changes in the available and specially compiled
and readable Report, that was not structure of employment in the Cen­ data, it identifies the common
just of interest to labour market tral and Eastern European econo­ trends and the points of difference
specialists, but to all those with a mies; divergence and convergence in in sectoral and occupational
wider concern for employment and employment performance across the developments.
Next the Report considers one of
the most difficult issues we have to
face in employment and labour
market policy — namely whether
there is a simple trade-off between
quantity and quality in terms of
employment creation, or whether
more complex relationships are at
work. Making use of a variety of
data on earnings and employment,
the Report conducts a detailed
analysis, looking also at the com­
parative experience of different
Member States.
Finally, the Report considers the
ageing of Europe's population and
of its workforce. Many of the issues
are now well recognised and have
already given rise to a variety of
concerns — from the financial
sustainability of pension systems to
the effect of fewer young people
entering the labour market. The
report looks in detail at some of the
issues that have been much less
analysed — not least the question of
where older people actually work in
the labour market at the present
time and the implications of
encouraging people to stay longer
in employment.
These are some of the many impor­
tant issues high on our employment
agenda today. As in previous years,
I would invite you to study the find­
ings of the Report in detail and to
draw your views and conclusions.
As we advance in terms of policy
action, we need, not less analysis
and information, but more. In that
spirit, I strongly recommend the
1999 Report to you.
Pádraig Flynn Employment in Europe 1999 Table of Contents
Employment in Europe 1999
Table of Contents
Overview — Jobs in Europe: confidence amidst uncertainty
Part I Recent developments in employment and unemployment
Section 1 Developments at the Union level
Developments in Member States Section 2
Employment developments in Central and Section 3
Eastern Europe
Section 4 Regional developments in employment rates
Part II Employment Issues
Section 1 Job creation in Europe and the US
Section 2 Employment growth and job quality
in the European Union
Section 3 The labour market implications of ageing
Employment indicators in the EU and Member States
Macroeconomic indicators in the EU and Member States
Employment indicators in Central and Eastern Europe
Sources Overview — Jobs in Europe: confidence amidst uncertainty
Overview — Jobs in Europe: confidence amidst uncertainty
The Employment in Europe report depends critically on maintaining • Youth unemployment fell,
sharply during the year, by 1999 presents the latest trends in the level of GDP growth, and chal­
employment and the labour market some three times more than lenges in continuing the process of
and provides the analytical back­ for adults, a decline of some 4 structural change remain.
ground to the review of the employ­ percentage points since the
ment strategy and the adoption of peak. • Economic growth continued
the Employment Guidelines for modestly in 1998, at 2.9% and is
2000. The immediate outlook is one expected to grow modestly • Long-term unemployment fell
of confidence — based on the launch again in 1999 at 2.1%. little in 1998, the rate falling by
of EMU and the strengthened job only a third of a percentage
creation process — tinged with • Employment expanded strongly point to 4.9% of the labour force
uncertainties at the global level. The in 1998, by 1.8 million, or 1.2%, and the share remaining at 49%
start of a process towards a Euro­ to bring total employment to of the total unemployed. The
pean Employment Pact, combining 151 million and thet proportion unemployed for two
the strengths of the employment and rate to 61%. years or more also rose to 31%,
macroeconomic strategies, can only
or 62% of all long-term
tip the balance further towards a
• Employment of men increased unemployed.
healthier labour market in Europe
significantly for the first time in
with more and better jobs for all
the present recovery, almost Employment rises but
those who wish to work.
half of the net additional jobs
remains below 1991 peak
going to men; the share of
women in employment, how­Recent developments
ever, rose further to 42% and Total employment increased by
— the stylised facts
the gender gap in the employ­ 1.8 million in the Union in 1998,
ment rate declined to just under equivalent to a rise of 1.2%, more
From the summer of 1998, the 20 percentage points. than double the increase in 1997
recovery of the Union economy lost and the highest rate of growth
momentum. This essentially • More permanent jobs than tem­ since 1990 (Graph I). Despite this
reflects the direct and indirect porary ones were created in growth, the number in work in
impact of the sharp deterioration in 1998, but the latter still made up 1998 was still over 600 thousand
the world economy on exports and over 40% of the increase in below the peak reached in 1991.
investment in the Union. Given the employment and now account Four years of economic recovery
underlying strength of the Union forl21/2%ofalljobs. and continuous expansion in
economy, some improvement of the employment, therefore, have not
external economic environment • Unemployment fell further in yet offset the three years of
and confidence-building economic 1998 to an average of 10% for the decline between 1991 and 1994.
policies, economic activity is year as a whole, a decline of over Given the continuing growth of
expected to regain its momentum. 1 million during the year. working-age population, the
GDP growth is now forecast to employment rate in 1998 (at just
reach 2.1% in 1999 and to acceler­ • Women and men benefited over 61%), though up on the 1997
ate further to 2.7% in 2000. equally from the decline in level (by over V2 percentage point)
unemployment, so that the was, nevertheless, still some lVè
Trends and prospects suggest that unemployment rate for women percentage points below the level
the job creation process in Europe is is still some 3 percentage points 7 years earlier before the onset of
gaining strength, although this higher than for men. the recession (almost 63%).
-7 Overview — Jobs in Europe: confidence amidst uncertainty
While job growth in Europe in time ones (Graph III). In the contracts, the figures being much
1998 was closer to the rate Union as a whole, half of the net the same for men and women, signi­
achieved in the US (l1/2%), it was additional jobs were part­time. fying a continuing growth in the
still lower, just as it has been For women, however, almost 70% importance of temporary working
every year since 1991. On the of the increased jobs were part­ (which now accounts for around
other hand, it was substantially time. Even for men, the figure was 12V2% of all those employed in the
higher than in Japan, where 28%, which means that there was Union). Moreover, it means that
employment fell for the first time a significant and ongoing increase over the period 1994 to 1998, well
during the present recession — in the proportion of men working over half of the net additional jobs
and, indeed, for the first time part­time. Over the four years of created were temporary ones (56%)
since the first oil crisis in 1974. recovery 1994 to 1998, over 3 mil­ and almost all of those for men
Nevertheless, the employment lion of the 4 million net additional (86%).
rate in Europe remains substan­ jobs were part­time.
tially below the level in either Unemployment falls ...
Japan or the US (close to 75% in Even in 1998, the general pattern
both) (Graph II). was not repeated in all Member t continued to fall,
States. In Germany, in particular, from just over 10V2% in 1997, and a
the small rise in total employment peak of just over 11% in 1994, to an For the first time during the pres­
was a result of a sharp decline in average of 10% in 1998 (Graph W). ent recovery, employment of men
increased by almost as much as full­time jobs (by almost 300 thou­ Given the increase in the number in
sand) compensated by an expan­that of women. Some 49% of the work, this implies that around 60%
sion of part­time ones. This is in of the net additional jobs since 1994 net additional jobs created in 1998
line with the experience since 1991, have gone to new entrants to the went to men, but the number of
women in employment relative to since when over 3*/2 million full­ labour force rather than to those
men continued to increase (to time jobs were lost to be partially who were previously recorded as
replaced by just over 1 million part­almost 42%). Over the four years being unemployed.
time ones. 1994 to 1998 as a whole, almost
two­thirds of the net additional Unemployment declined through­
jobs went to women rather than There were also more permanent out 1998 and has continued to do
men. jobs created in 1998 than tempo­ so during the first few months of
rary ones, in contrast to the earlier 1999, if comparatively slowly, to
around 9V£% at the last count. Also for the first time during the years of recovery. Nevertheless, it
was still the case that some 41V2% During this period, the fall has present recovery, the number of
of the increase in employment in been much the same for women as full­time jobs increased signifi­
cantly in 1998, but this was still the Union stemmed from the rise in for men, though the rate for
matched by the growth of part­ the number in work on fixed­term women is some 3 percentage
I Change in employment and working­ II Employment rates in the Union, US III Change in part­time and full­time
age population in the Union, 1960­2005 and Japan, 1976­98 employment in the Union, 1988­98
% change % working-age population (15-64) % total employment in previous year
2.0 20 80 2.0 60
D Working-age population ■ Part-time
■ Employment 1.5 1.5 D Full-time '
70 70 0.5
US z' ml 0.0 o.o
0.0 m
­0.5 -0.5
•0 5
-10 •1.0
-1.5 -1.5 J
-1.5 ­1.5 ¡obs Ι9Θ0­Α4 -2.0 -2.0 —LI
-2.0 -2.0 50 50 -25 -2.5
196119651969197319771981198519891993199720012005 197619781980 1982 1984 1986198819901992 199419961998 19881989199019911992199319941995199619971998