Youth Employment situation in Lithuania and the opportunities that project SEPAL is providing


On the 1stof October 2020, 59.900 young people under the age of 29 were registered with the Employment Services. Compared to the 1stof September, the unemployment rate of young people under 29 increased by 2.2%, and compared to the 1stof October of the previous year – by 8.0%. 47000 out of 87.500 young people who applied during the three quarters of this year didn’t have professional qualifications. The number of young people without a profession increased by 79.3% over the year.

From January until May 2020, 2.1 thousand graduates registered in with the Employment Services, which means 21.4% less than in the same period in 2019. In May 2020, 282 graduates applied to the Employment Services for a job search, that means almost twice less than in May 2019. Almost half are graduated from vocational training institutions.

The number of young people registering with the Employment Services increased more than other age groups after the announcement of the quarantine. The share of the unemployed aged 25-29 grew the most. This may have been influenced by changes in the legal basis – young students studying, registering with the Employment Services, are granted the status of unemployed, and those who have the required length of social insurance are granted an unemployment social insurance payment. In the past, young people have been granted the learner status.

In the last few years, graduates of the following study programs have mainly registered to the Employment Services:

  • universities – law, public administration, creative industries, physiotherapy, political
  • science;
  • colleges – social work, accounting, law, technical operation of vehicles;
  • vocational schools – professions of chef, car mechanic, finisher.

As many as 64.4% of young people have work experience: of these, 66.4% worked under an employment contract, 5.5% were self-employed, 2.2% operated under a business license and 0.1% were the owners of an individual company. Most of the young people worked in wholesale and retail trade, manufacturing and accommodation and food service. 35.6% haven’t worked anywhere or haven’t worked for 2 or more years.

According to the data provided by the Employment Services, the chances of young people find a job just after graduation (university, college, vocational school) are increasingly difficult. This is probably because they don’t have experience so companies don’t want to accept them and provide the opportunity to gain much-needed experience. For companies, this seems too unprofitable and they choose not to check for hidden potential.

However, the SEPAL project helps such young people to gain work experience by learning in a specific workplace. As a result, young people are becoming more of  a necessity in the labour market. Also, the project ensures that the NEET is accompanied by a WISE expert during the entire training period in the workplace, who he can ask for help or support if needed.


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