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Availability of jobs in Japan improves for 1st time in 3 yrs

The availability of jobs in Japan improved for the first time in three years in fiscal 2021, owing to the gradual easing of the downside effects of the coronavirus pandemic, a government report said on Tuesday.

For the year through March, the job-to-applicant ratio edged up 0.06 points to 1.16, the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare said.

This equates to 116 jobs available for every 100 people seeking them.

Separate government data showed that in fiscal 2021, the average jobless rate dropped 0.1 percentage point to 2.8 percent.

The number of unemployed people in fiscal 2021, meanwhile, on an average basis, declined by 80,000 from the previous year to 1.91 million, the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications said.

Those in gainful employment in the recording period expanded by 40,000 to 67.06 million, the statistics bureau also said.

The number of workers in the health care sector increased substantially, the data showed, expanding 180,000 from the previous year to 8.92 million workers, the government said.

The data also showed notable growth in the telecommunications sector, with the number of workers increasing by 140,000 to 2.59 million.

Regular workers in Japan each month in fiscal 2021 totaled 35.94 million on average, rising by 190,000 compared to a year earlier, while non-regular workers totalled 20.77 million, increasing by 30,000 in the same reporting period.

The job availability ratio in March inched up to 1.22 from 1.21 in the previous month, marking the third consecutive month of increase, the government’s data showed.

The unemployment rate in March on a seasonally adjusted basis stood at 2.6 percent, meanwhile, which was a 0.1-point dip from the previous month, marking the second straight month of improvement.

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