Labour market information

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Spain - País Vasco

Short overview of the labour market

 

The Basque Country is an Autonomous Community located in the north of Spain (also referred to as Euskadi) covering an area of 7 230.33 km2 and comprising three territories or provinces: Araba/Álava, Bizkaia and Gipuzkoa.

According to provisional data from the National Statistics Institute, on 1 January 2018 the population of this community was 2 198 657, accounting for 4.71 % of the Spanish total and with year-on-year growth of 0.21 %. The population density is 304.09 inhabitants/km2. By territory, 52.29 % of the region’s inhabitants reside in Bizkaia, 32.76 % in Gipuzkoa and 14.95 % in Araba/Álava. The number of foreigners in the Basque Country increased by 5.66 % in 2017. This group accounts for 6.87 % of the population, making the Basque Country one of the seven autonomous communities with the lowest percentage of foreigners.

From a macroeconomic perspective, according to preliminary INE estimates for 2017, Basque Country GDP grew by 4.3 %, compared to the national growth rate of 4.0 %. Per capita gross domestic product in the Basque Country was EUR 33 088, ranking second behind the Community of Madrid.

Basque Country GDP grew at a year-on-year rate of 2.9 % in Q2 2018. According to the quarterly accounts published by EUSTAT, variation with respect to the first quarter of the year was 0.6 %. This level of growth was higher than that of the Spanish economy (2.7 %) and higher than the year-on-year growth of the 19-country euro area (2.1 %). Domestic demand grew by 3.0 %. The contribution of the external balance was negative, with quarter-on-quarter growth slightly higher in imports (2.4 %) than exports (2.2 %). This year-on-year GDP growth in Q2 2018 was based on positive trends in all sectors of activity, although industry (3.1 %) and services (2.8 %) grew at lower rates while construction (4.1 %) was the most dynamic. The primary sector grew by 0.8 %.

On 1 January 2018 there were 144 357 active companies in the Basque Country, 78.81 % in the services sector, 13.28 % in construction and 7.22 % in industry. 48.59 % of these companies do not have any employees, 45.42 % have fewer than 10, 5.46 % have between 10 and 99, 0.46 % between 100 and 499 and 0.07 % have over 500 employees. In September 2018 there were 950 258 workers paying social security contributions, 1.89 % more than in September 2017 but far from the 3.02 % increase at national level. Of these workers, 18.06 % were self-employed.

The number of workers affected by collective dismissals, contract suspensions and reduced working hours in Q1 2018 fell by 38.7 % compared to the same period the previous year.

The most relevant companies are: Aernnova, Grupo Arteche, BBVA, CAF, CIE Automotive, Etxe Tar, Euskaltel, Gamesa, Gestamp, Iberdrola, Ibermática Idom, Ingeteam, ITP, Kutxabank, Mondragón Corporación, Michelín, Mercedes, Sener, Tubacex, Tubos Reunidos, Velatia, Vidrala, etc.

LFS data corresponding to Q3 2018 reflect a downward trend in the unemployment rate, which was 9.42 % compared to 11.56 % during the same quarter the year before. The occupied population has increased by 1.81 % while the active population has declined by 0.59 %. The number of unemployed persons fell by 18.99 %.

According to information from the Public State Employment Service’s Occupational Monitoring Centre:

  • A total of 987 085 contracts were registered between October 2017 and September 2018 (2.95 % more than the previous year) accounting for 4.49 % of all contracts registered nationally. Of these contracts, 50.06 % were awarded to women, 32.87 % to those under 30, 26.86 % to those over 45, 11.91 % to foreigners, 2.68 % to long-term jobseekers and 1.70 % to persons with disabilities.
  • On 30 September 2018 there were 123 037 unemployed jobseekers in this autonomous community, meaning a year-on-year change of -6.82 %. Of the total number of unemployed persons, women accounted for 57.62 %, the long-term unemployed for 51.97 %, those over 45 for 49.88 %, those under 30 for 15.08 %, foreigners for 15.39 % and persons with disabilities for 4.36 %.

 

Text last edited on: 04/2019


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