The Pakistan Institute of Development Economics (PIDE) on Monday painted a grim picture of the rising rate of unemployment across the country, underlining that 24 per cent of educated people were jobless at the moment.
The PIDE, in its briefing to the Senate Standing Committee on Planning and Development meeting chaired by Saleem Mandviwala, said the unemployment rate in the country had reached 16pc — contrary to the government's claim of 6.5pc.
The committee was also informed that 40pc of educated women were also unemployed countrywide.
The term 'educated' here refers to those people who have acquired an undergraduate or graduate degree, which should enable them to find a job.
The PIDE officials pointed out that some educated people get themselves enrolled in M.Phil studies to continue learning as they struggle to fetch a better job. This also skewed the unemployment rate as they weren't included in the figures.
'1.5m people including M.Phil degree holders applied for a peon's job'
The officials told the Senate committee that at least 1.5 million people applied for a peon's position in a high court that was advertised recently.
"Among those applying for the job included M.Phil degree holders," officials said.
Mandviwala sought the exact number of educated youth and children in the country.
In response, the PIDE officials said that no research was being conducted at the government level, adding that all such studies were done from abroad.
They said several research institutes were operating in the country, but the research purposes were not being fulfilled.
The Economic Survey 2020-21 released in June this year had revealed the spread of Covid-19 had severely affected employment conditions in the country and the suspension of economic activities due to imposition of lockdowns rendered an estimated 20.71m workers jobless.
According to the survey, a large population and lack of proper management of human resources have also had a negative impact on the employment rate in the country.
"Pakistan being the fifth most populous country with the ninth largest labour force in the world, adds a large number to its workforce every year," the report had pointed out.