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Registered unemployment continued to plummet in April 2022, with the number of people registering for work dropping to 963, 1,285 fewer when compared to the same time last year, according to the National Statistics Office.

Those who had been registering for work for less than 21 weeks and those whose registration duration was between 21 and 52 weeks also decreased when compared to the same month in 2021. A drop was also recorded among those persons who were registering for work for more than one year.

The number of persons with a disability who were registering for work decreased by 12 persons when compared to the previous year, reaching 247 persons. Males accounted for 74.1 per cent of the total registrants with a disability.

The largest share of males and females on the unemployment register sought occupations as Clerical support workers, with 21.9 per cent and 43.8 per cent respectively.

Good news for Government coffers, bad news for business

While the historically low levels of unemployment may be good news for Malta’s Government at a time when it is shielding citizens from the rising costs of energy, subsidising the cost of grain for importers, and is reeling from two years of pandemic-related support, businesses will be less than thrilled.

Taxation revenue from the employed will boost Government revenue, however a wide swathe of representatives hailing from various sectors have sounded the alarm over staffing shortages. Catering and hospitality industries have complained of shortages in particular, while the SME Chamber CEO, Abigail Agius Mamo, has also sounded the alarm over a backlog for authorities to process work visas of third country nationals.

She has urged employers to cast a wider net, and look beyond South East Asia to source workers.

Just this morning, a Gozo Tourism Association online survey found that tourism-based establishments listed staff shortages as the second major concern, behind a rise in operational costs due to inflation.

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