N. Korean defectors’ jobless rate falls under 5 pct

December 22, 2015

(Yonhap) — The unemployment rate for North Korean defectors declined to the 4-percent level this year thanks to the government’s support programs for their resettlement, a report showed Tuesday.

The jobless rate for North Korean defectors stood at 4.8 percent as of November, down from 6.2 percent a year earlier, according to a report from the Unification Ministry. South Korea’s unemployment rate hit 3.5 percent for 2014.

The defectors’ unemployment rate has been on the decline since it reached 9.7 percent in 2013. The rate came in at 7.5 percent in 2012 after hitting 12.1 percent a year earlier.

The ministry said that job markets for North Korean defectors have improved on the back of supportive government measures, but there are still setbacks in terms of the quality of employment.

The total number of North Koreans who entered the South reached 28,607 as of November, 1,088 coming into the South in the first 11 months of this year.

The number of North Koreans who are currently residing in the South totaled 26,514 as of the end of last month, according to the report.