World pessimistic about job prospects, poll shows
Most people in the world were pessimistic about the job market last year, with the Europeans were the most pessimistic, according to results of a Gallup worldwide poll released Monday.
Fifty-seven percent of adults worldwide, on average, said it was a bad time to find a job in their local communities, while 33 percent said it was a good time, according to Gallup surveys conducted in 146 countries and areas in 2011.
Europeans were the most pessimistic, with 72 percent saying it was a bad time. Optimism was highest in the Americas, where a still dismal 38 percent said it was a good time, according to the surveys.
All of the top 10 countries where residents were most positive about the job market were developing countries, except Singapore. Oil-rich Middle Eastern nations took four of the top spots, as Saudi Arabia and Oman led internationally with 69 percent of residents saying it was a good time to find a job.
Other countries on the Top 10 list included Panama, Qatar, Singapore, the Philippines, Kuwait, Thailand, Paraguay and Uzbekistan. Oil-rich countries continued to shelter their citizens from recessionary pressures at times of global economic downturn largely due to increased global demand for oil.
Six of the 10 countries with the most negative outlook for finding jobs were EU countries, which were hit badly by the global economic recession, with 96 percent of Greeks and 93 percent of the Irish said that it was a bad time to find a job.
Other countries on the list included Senegal, Spain, Italy, Serbia, Bulgaria, Moldova, Egypt and Slovenia. These perceptions are likely to persist in 2012 as Europe continues to deleverage its debts, the Gallup said in a report.
Due to the domestic turmoil during the Arab Spring which brought down the government of President Hosni Mubarak, 87 percent of Egyptians felt pessimistic about the job outlook in 2011 as tourism, manufacturing and construction industries were hard hit.
People in eight of the world’s 10 largest economies, which included Brazil, Germany, India, China, the U.S., France, Russia, Japan, United Kingdom and Italy, did not think it was a good time to find a job in 2011. Brazil and Germany were the two bright spots in an otherwise gloomy outlook on the availability of jobs, as about half of residents in each country said it was a good time to find a job.
“Leaders must address systemic issues to achieve sustainable long-term employment and economic growth. Countries — particularly those in Europe — must find ways to promote entrepreneurship and job creation while addressing bloated public sectors and extensive patronage systems,” the Gallup report said.
It also suggested countries diversify economies by shifting away from single sources of growth, which may help them better weather economic storms.