Unemployment and Gender

Abdel Aziz Aluwaisheg reads into the unemployment numbers released by the government and focuses on unemployment among Saudi women:

Their unemployment rate was already extremely high in the first quarter (34 percent), but it went up to nearly 36 percent in the fourth quarter, increasing by nearly five percent in that interval.

Unemployment among Saudi women has been on the rise for some time. In 1999, their rate of unemployment stood at 16 percent. It has since steadily climbed to reach 36 percent in the fourth quarter of 2012.

In other countries, such high rates of unemployment are associated with economic decline or deep recessions, but as the economy grows unemployment rates usually decline for all social groups, regardless of gender or national origin, even when there are differentials in their unemployment rates.

Not in Saudi Arabia, where the economy is booming but the unemployment rates keep rising.