Over 68% of Asia-Pacific's workforce makes a living in informal economy, says International Labour Organisation

As many as 1.3 billion people, or 68.2 percent, of the employed population in the Asia-Pacific region make their living in the informal economy, according to the International Labour Organisation (ILO). Informal employment is predominant in rural areas (85.2 percent of employment) and accounts for almost half of all employment (47.4 percent) in urban areas.

Two billion people – or more than 61 percent of the world’s employed population – work in the informal economy. Excluding agriculture, half of the employed population are in informal employment, said an ILO report, published on Wednesday.

Representational image. Reuters

Representational image. Reuters

"In Africa, 85.8 percent of [all] employment is informal. The proportion is 68.2 percent in Asia and the Pacific, 68.6 percent in the Arab states, 40.0 percent in the Americas and 25.1 percent in Europe and Central Asia," the ILO said.

In April, the ILO said that there were over 700 million workers living in poverty in emerging and developing countries, who were unable to move beyond the $3.10 per person per day threshold in 2017.

The rate of economic progress has slowed, and many developing countries are failing to keep pace with the growing labour force, ILO Director-General Guy Ryder said.

"Despite significant progress, in 2017 there were still more than 700 million workers living in poverty in emerging and developing countries, unable to lift themselves above the $3.10 per person daily poverty threshold," Ryder told the International Monetary Fund (IMF) during its annual Spring meeting.

Noting that a rebound in economic growth has strengthened job creation and that the global unemployment rate is expected to fall slightly between 2017 and 2019, after a three-year rise, Ryder warned that the labour market recovery remains uneven across country groupings, with continued rises in the numbers of people unemployed in developing and emerging economies.

With inputs from PTI

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Updated Date: May 03, 2018 19:57:19 IST