Unemployment rate 11 percent among people with non-western background

  • Unemployment among people with non-western background growing for the first time since 2005
  • Unemployment non-western men and women at the same level
  • High unemployment rate non-western youth
  • Unemployment up among the four largest non-western categories

As a result of the economic crisis, unemployment in the non-western population in the Netherlands has risen in 2009 for the first time since 2005. The latest figures released by Statistics Netherlands show that unemployment has declined over the last years, in particular among people with a non-western background.

Last year, 11.0 percent of the non-western population in the Netherlands were unemployed. The rate among them is nearly three times as high as in the native Dutch population (4.0 percent). Unemployment increased in both groups relative to one year previously. In 2008, the unemployment rate in the non-western population was also three times as high as for native Dutch (9.0 against 3.2 percent).

Unemployment among non-western men was 11.3 percent in 2009, as opposed to 8.2 percent in the previous year. The corresponding rates for their female counterparts in 2009 and 2008 were 10.7 and 10.2 percent respectively. Unemployment rates for men and women with a non-western background are currently at the same level. In recent years, the unemployment rate for non-western women was usually higher.

Young non-western people are affected most by the increase in unemployment. Last year, 20.5 percent were unemployed against 16.8 percent in 2008. Among non-western 25 to 45-year-olds, the rate rose to 9.5 percent. With 9.6 percent, the young native Dutch population also suffered from the economic downturn. In other age groups, unemployment rose only marginally.

The four major non-western groups in the Netherlands are Turks, Moroccans, Surinamese and Antilleans/Arubans. Throughout the years, unemployment has always been highest in the Moroccan community. In 2009, the rate was 12.3 percent. With 10.1 percent, Surinamese generally have the lowest unemployment rate. Unemployment grew in all these non-western groups in 2009.