S. Korea's jobless rate hits 4.5% in March, highest figure for March in 17 years

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Despite government efforts to breathe life into South Korea's flagging job market,... figures from March make grim reading,... especially for those searching for work.
The unemployment rate was up again,... with the jobless figure for young Koreans hitting yet another record high.
Seo Bo-bin reports.
Another gloomy month for jobseekers in South Korea.
Data released by Statistics Korea on Wednesday shows the overall jobless rate in the country was four-and-a-half percent in March,... up zero-point-four percentage points from a year earlier-- and logging the highest monthly rate for March in 17 years.
The number of unemployed Koreans -- over one-point-two million -- continues a trend seen for three consecutive months,... with the figure remaining above the one-million mark.
The youth unemployment rate is more disheartening.
Data shows eleven-point-six percent of young Koreans between the ages of 15-to-29 were classified as unemployed in March,... the highest rate since March 2016.
Government efforts to solve the problem have yet to bear fruit in any substantial way.
Earlier this month the government proposed a three-point-seven billion U.S. dollar supplementary budget largely aimed at creating more jobs for young people.
This is the second extra budget bill of its kind under the relatively young Moon Jae-in administration,... following the ten billion dollar supplementary budget that was approved last year.
But,... with the country's rival parties deadlocked over contentious issues like the extra budget and amending the Constitution,... it looks as though the country will have to wait for the extra funds,... at least until the parties can strike a deal.
Seo Bo-bin, Arirang News.

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