Vietnam unemployment up slightly to 2.29 pct

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Vietnam's unemployment rate rose to 2.29 percent in the first six months compared to 2.22 percent a year ago, the General Statistics Office said, warning of more job cuts as economic downturn worsens.

"The jobless rate in Vietnam now is still low," news website VnExpress cited Statistics Office Director Do Thuc as saying. He said under similar tough conditions in 2009, the rate was higher at 2.9 percent.

Thuc said a person is only considered jobless if they do not have any source of income during the survey period of seven days. Those who have lost their jobs but are still working in another sector, even temporarily, are not counted, he added.

He said with more than 26,000 companies having shut down or halted opearations in the first six months, there will be challenges for the economy and the employment situation.


More firms shut down in Vietnam as economic downturn deepens

According to the office, 31.7 percent of companies in Vietnam plan to downsize.

Statistics from the Ministry of Labor, Invalids and Social Affairs show that there were 175,000 new claims for unemployment insurance in the first five months alone.

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