Iran’s jobless rate hits 11.8 percent
Azerbaijan, Baku, Feb. 22/ Trend F.Milad/
Unemployment rate in Iran stood at 11.8 percent in the third quarter of the current calendar year, ended on December 21, 2011, showing 0.3 percent decrease compared to the figure for the same period of last year, the Iranian Statistical Center reported on Wednesday.
According to the report, the country's jobless population during the three-month period hit over 2.6 million, Mehr news agency reported.
Some $200 billion should be invested to create one million jobs annually to keep the current unemployment rate steady, the Iranian vice Majlis speaker said in January.
"In the most optimistic case, all the money which can be allocated to job creation does not exceed $80 billion. So, the country faces $120 billion deficit to create one million jobs annually," Mohammad-Reza Bahonar told ILNA news agency.
The nation's working population was 25 million in the previous calendar year.
Cooperatives, Labor, and Social Welfare Minister Abdolreza Sheikholeslami said that the country plans to cut its unemployment rate to 7 percent by the end of 2012 in line with the fifth socio-economic development plan (2010-2015).
The ministry has proposed a plan for sending up to 100,000 laborers to abroad by 2015 in a bid to ease unemployment.
Eighteen countries have been identified as the targets for the Iranian workforce.