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Who are the 370,000 jobseekers in Austria and where are they all?

Amanda Previdelli
Amanda Previdelli - [email protected]
Who are the 370,000 jobseekers in Austria and where are they all?
As unemployment rates climb, workers may understandably worry about job security. Photo by Jon Tyson on Unsplash

Austria's unemployment numbers have risen sharply but who are the people currently looking for jobs in the country?


At the end of March, 369,640 people were registered with the labour market agency (AMS).

Of these, 291,468 were unemployed, and 78,172 people were taking part in AMS training courses, as announced by the Ministry of Economic Affairs and the agency on Tuesday. This represents an increase of almost 11 percent compared to the same period last year. Now, unemployment in Austria has reached the 6.9 percent mark.

Construction and industry were particularly hard hit, with unemployment rising by more than 20 percent in both sectors.

"Compared to the years before the outbreak of the Covid pandemic, this is a low figure," says ÖVP Labor Minister Martin Kocher. "The current slightly higher unemployment rate than in March 2023 is primarily a result of the challenging economic environment."

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The head of AMS, Johannes Kopf, said that Austria is clearly still in a recession and that he no longer believes in a quick drop in the unemployment rate. "Even if growth returns, the unemployment rate would only later sink", he said.

Who are the unemployed in Austria?

According to the AMS numbers, most of the unemployed people right now are men—and the number of unemployed men rose 13 percent year over year. While foreigners make up just about 20 percent of the population, they are 43 percent of the unemployed workers in the country.

This number increased by 17.3 percent compared to last year, a figure that worries the government and has led the opposition, particularly the far-right, to criticise government actions for promoting easier immigration of skilled workers to Austria. 

The head of AMS admitted there was a "serious problem" with foreign workers but disagreed that the issue was with qualified immigrants. He later said on Austrian radio that there is an issue with refugees, with around 1,200 people arriving every month, mainly from Syria. According to him, almost one in four people without a job is now a refugee and integration into the labour market takes at least two or three years. 

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While the proportion of people older than 50 who are unemployed remains high (26.7 percent), the increase of 12.7 percent in the number of unemployed young people under 25 years of age was also noteworthy.

The capital Vienna has the highest unemployment rate at 11.3 percent, followed by Carinthia (7.8 percent), Burgenland (6.8 percent), and Lower Austria (6.4 percent). The lowest unemployment rates are in Tyrol (3.7 percent) and Salzburg (3.8 percent).


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