Women jobseekers in Turkey hit historic high
Şebnem Turhan - ISTANBULThe ratio of women participating in the labor force has hit a historic high of 36.8 percent, while the number of women applying to the Turkish Employment Organization (İŞKUR) has also increased by 47 percent, according to statistics released by the Turkish Statistics Institute (TÜİK).
The statistics showed that there are around 26 million women in Turkey above the age of 15. As of June, 36.8 percent of the aforementioned women were active in the workforce, according to TÜİK.
TÜİK said the percentage, equaling 9,574,000 women, was a historic high for Turkey. At the same time, TÜİK said 1.2 million of the women from this figure were currently unemployed. The statistics also showed that 16,455,000 women were outside the workforce, which is also a historic low for Turkey.
The data obtained from İŞKUR also showed the increase in the number of women in the labor force. In the first six months of 2016, the number of women who filled out an application and registered with the organization to work as soon as a suitable job becomes available increased 47 percent, reaching 1,829,791.
The ratio of female applicants to İŞKUR increased by 27 percent in the first half of the year compared to the first six months of last year, with 500,959 women applying to the organization over the six months. The number of female applicants in May hit a total of 96,081, according to İŞKUR statistics.
This notwithstanding, the number of women placed in jobs was not as high as the number of applicants. A total of 113,483 women were placed in jobs in the first six months of 2016, which corresponds to half the number of men placed in jobs.
The number of female jobseekers has been on the rise in recent years, but the ratio of 36.8 percent is still far below the ratio in developed countries.
Still, at the end of 2002, the ratio of women participating in the workforce was nearly 22.2 percent, with nearly 5.5 million women in the workforce and 4.8 million actually in jobs. Approximately 20 million women were outside the labor force 14 years ago, according to the statistics.
The number of women participating in the workforce especially started to increase after the 2008 global economic crisis. In 2008, the ratio of women in the labor force was 25 percent – a figure that rose to 31.9 percent in July 2013. The number of women employed in the first half of 2016 shows that the number has doubled since 2005.
Despite the fact that almost 16.4 million women are currently outside the workforce, the statistics showed that millions of women are willing to participate in the labor force.