Groningen has highest unemployment rate

Provincial unemployment rates hardly changed in the Netherlands in 2011 relative to 2010. Proportionally, Groningen had the highest number of unemployed. Unemployment increased in Amsterdam, Rotterdam and The Hague in 2011.

Unemployment in Groningen twice as high as in Zeeland

With 7.3 percent, Groningen had the highest percentage of unemployed last year, marginally above the 2010 level. Zeeland, again, had the lowest unemployment rate (3.7 percent) in 2011.

Lower rate in Limburg

The overall unemployment rate in the Dutch labour force was 5.4 percent in 2011, the same as in 2010. In the province of Limburg, the rate dropped markedly from 6.1 percent in 2010 to 5.1 percent in 2011. In the provinces of Drenthe and North Brabant, unemployment declined marginally.

Unemployment by province

Unemployment by province

Significant unemployment growth in The Hague

In three out of the four largest cities in the Netherlands, unemployment was higher in 2011 than in 2010. In The Hague, the rate climbed from 6.8 percent in 2010 to 8.3 percent in 2011.

With 9.5 percent, Rotterdam proportionally had the highest number of unemployed among the four major Dutch cities. This situation has continued since 2001. Utrecht was the only major city in the Netherlands where unemployment remained stable. Among the four largest Dutch cities, Utrecht has had the lowest rate for the third consecutive year.

Unemployment in the four major Dutch cities

Unemployment in the four major Dutch cities

Youth unemployment down

Unemployment among under-25s was relatively high last year (9.8 percent), though below the level of the previous year (11.7 percent).

In the southern part of the Netherlands, youth unemployment fell from 11.7 to 8.8 percent. In the eastern and, to a lesser extent, in the western part of the country, youth unemployment also declined. In the northern part, youth unemployment remained stable at approximately 12 percent.

Paul de Winden