2.9 million jobs were created in 2021. This is according to the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics’ economic survey 2022. The survey shows that there were more men in employment in 2021 while women dominated the education sector.
Manufacturing, Agriculture, Forestry, and Fishing, as well as Wholesale and retail trade industries, were the top three employers in 2021 accounting for 15.8, 14.9, and 12.9 percent of the total private sector employment, respectively.
The latest economic survey by the Kenya Bureau of statistics further indicates that overall employment in the private sector recorded a growth of 6.0 percent to 2.9 million in 2021 boosted by global ease in travel restrictions and favorable weather conditions.
The informal sector created 754 thousand jobs accounting for 81.4 percent of the total jobs created outside of small-scale agriculture and pastoral activities.
The rate of unemployment more than halved between 2006 and 2016 to a near three percent but began to gradually rise having exceeded five percent in 2019.
However, according to data from the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics, the unemployment rate in Kenya shot to 10.4 percent in 2020 amid the pandemic where 1.7 million Kenyans lost their jobs.
One year later, prospects of securing a job are looking up if the latest economic survey is to go. The report denotes general ease in unemployment rates, with Manufacturing, Agriculture, Forestry, and Fishing as well as Wholesale and retail trade industries leading the pack accounting for 15.8, 14.9, and 12.9 percent of the total private sector employment.
The easing of the pandemic restrictions impacted positively on the employment in the Accommodation and Food Activities industry recording a significant growth of 23.9 percent compared to a decline of 38.7 percent registered in 2020.
This was followed by Administrative and Support Service Activities, Education, and, Arts and Entertainment at 20.8, 16.3, and 15.9 percent, respectively.
However, it is still seemingly easier for men to secure jobs in the private sector with male employees in modern sector wage employment accounting for 60.7 percent of the total wage employment in 2021.
An intersectoral comparison shows that Education, Manufacturing, Public administration, and defense; compulsory social security engaged the largest number of males accounting for 17.6 percent, 13.7 percent and 12.4 percent of total males engaged, respectively.
On the other hand, the majority of female employees were working in Education accounting for 26.4 percent of total females engaged in the modern sector.
The survey points to steady economic growth anchored by among others ease of travel restrictions across the globe, including Kenya as supply chains correct themselves amid growing demand and thus creating an opportunity for job creation in 2022.