Cypriots are among the most highly educated in the EU, according to the annual “Labour Force Survey” for 2009 by the Statistical Service.
The report provides data on the employed and unemployed population which are analysed by gender, age, education, branch of economic activity and occupational group.
Data are also presented on part-time employment as well as for second job holders and the weekly hours of work. The report also provides data on the ad-hoc module on “The entry of young people into the labour market”.
The main findings of the survey are the following.
The labour force (i.e. the employed and unemployed persons) amounted to 402,590 persons in 2009 consisting of 55.1% men and 44.9% women.
Total employed persons reached 381,265 and the employment rate for persons aged 15-64 years old was 69.9 %.
The corresponding rate for males stood at 77.6 % while that for females was much lower at 62.5%.
Both rates, however, are among the highest in the EU.
More than one-third (36.5%) of the workforce has completed tertiary education and 39.2% completed upper secondary education.
A total of 32,154 persons or 8.4% of the employed worked on a part-time basis.
Of these, 31.8% reported that they work on a part-time basis for personal or family reasons while 29.6% reported that they could not find a full-time job.
Just 3.9% of the working population or 14,986 persons reported having a second job also and a large proportion of these (29.2%) chose agriculture as a sideline.
The unemployment rate amounted to 5.3% of the labour force, which was lower for males 5.1% and higher for females 5.5%.
The highest rate of unemployment was observed among young persons below 25 years of age where it accounted for 13.8% of the labour force of the same age group.
Parents’ education matters
According to what is termed the “ad-hoc module”, the educational attainment level of Cypriots aged 25-34 seems to be directly associated with that of their parents.
For respondents whose parents have less than upper secondary educational level, 42.0% have an upper secondary educational level, 31.5% have tertiary education and only 26.5% have less than upper secondary education.
From the respondents whose parents have upper secondary education, 61.2% have tertiary education, 33.5% have an upper secondary education and only 5.3% have less than upper secondary educational level.
From the respondents whose parents have tertiary education, 85.9% have tertiary education, 13.5% have an upper secondary education and only 0.6% have less than upper secondary education.
Regarding the orientation of education, 68.2% of respondents aged 25-34 followed general orientation, while 31.8% followed a technical orientation.
From the respondents aged 25-34 who followed general orientation, 78.4% are employed, 16.9% are inactive and 4.7% are unemployed.
From the respondents who followed technical orientation 89.2% are employed, 5.5% are unemployed and 5.3% are inactive.
The survey showed that 47.8% of the persons aged 15-34 did not work during their studies in formal education, 33.7% worked during school holidays and 8.4% worked as part of their studies.
Of the respondents aged 15-34, 22.5% worked in their first job (after leaving formal education for the last time) for a period of 13-24 months; 22.1% for a period of 7-12 months; 14.9% for a period up to 6 months, while only 7.3% worked for a period of more than 6 years.
“Meso” also matters
The data also showed the importance of family and other connections, known as “meso” in Cyprus.
Among persons aged 15-34, 53.9% found their first job via family and friends.
Of the remainder, 16.2% via ads in press or on the internet, 12.1% via submission of direct job application to employer, 5.1% via an educational institution (school / college / university etc).
Only 2.9% found their first job via the Public Employment Services or the District Employment Office.
As far as the occupation of the first job of the respondents aged 15-34 is concerned. 29.6% worked as elementary workers, 16.2% as services and sales workers, 14.7% as clerks, 12.1% as craft and related trades workers. 10.2% as technicians. 9.5% as professionals and 5.5% as plant and machine operators.
August 03, 2010 – www.financialmirror.com