February 23, 2009 - 19:54 AMT
World financial crisis blighted the Armenian job market
According to analysts' assessments, demand for specialists in PR, marketing and graphic design will decrease dramatically.
The impact of the world financial crisis on the Armenian economy and social state of people has already become perceptible, especially in the population employment sector. The alarm has already sounded for a number of employment agencies: employers' offers are decreasing in ratio with the increasing labor supply.
According to the data provided by leading employment agencies, the number of applications increased 3 times as compared to the previous year. This is accounted for multiple stuff reductions as well as the inflow of guest workers who decided to return to their native country and wait till the crisis is over. Expressed numerically, if the monthly employment ratio in the beginning 2008 equaled 10-15 potential employees, the figure dropped to 5 by the end of the year. The demand is high for such specialists as: accountants, marketing and PR specialists, web- and graphical designers. Yet, according to recent assessments, the demand for marketing and PR specialists and graphical designers will register a drop. According to experts, if the first stage of crisis is characterized by the employers' trying to cut down expenses via stuff reductions, the next economizing attempt will affect the advertising sphere.

According to official data, the job market situation has been changing since the end of 2008. Yet, if the first quarter of 2008 registered a decrease in the unemployment rate (6.3% in 2008 as compared to 7% in 2007), in the 3rd quarter of 2008 the number of unemployed totaled 74 900 in December and increased by 2.5% (73 000) as compared to the beginning of the year, whereas in 2008 the economically active population size totaled 1194 600. In the absolute expression, average monthly nominal wage equaled AMD 91331 in 2008.

Viewed by different characteristics, the Armenian job market shows an obvious disbalance. Women constitute 70% of total number of unemployed. This is accounted for by a major emigration of able-bodied population (basically, men) from Armenia. According to experts' forecasts, the return of labor immigrants will also influence the disbalance.

The ratio of unemployed to employed people is highest among those aged 40-50. The unemployment ratio among the youth constitutes 21%. Yet according to PanARMENIAN.Net-conducted researches, the ratio will keep dropping: a new tendency is observed among employees: while previously they used to train their own personnel, the situation is dramatically changed - they're now economizing on such projects, giving preference to specialists with 15-20 years' working experience.