Number of Jobless Kenyans: Over 700,000 Kenyans lost their jobs in the turbulent year 2020. This has been revealed by the latest government’s unemployment data from the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics.
According to the data that is contained in the Economic Survey 2020 report, the private sector laid off some 206,700 workers while the informal sector lost 543,600 jobs.
This was the first time in 20 years that so many salaried jobs had been lost. The last time a significant number of salaried jobs were lost was in 2001 when some 18,300 salaried workers were fired. In the year 2020, 187,300 formal jobs were lost in the year ended June 2020. In addition, the number of self-employed workers also fell 6,600 to 156,100 in the period through June 2020.
“Consequently, cessation of movement in and out of some regions, closure of some businesses with high-exposure and reduction of business operating hours due to introduction of curfew, adversely affected employment in several sectors,” the report said.
In the fresh data, the KNBS rebased the Gross Domestic Product with 2016 serving as the new base year. The previous base year for the country’s GDP was 2009.
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“The rebasing of the GDP has resulted in GDP crossing the Sh. 10 trillion mark for the first time. The GDP for 2020 was therefore calculated at Sh. 10.8 trillion. The GDP for 2019 has also been revised to Sh. 10.3 trillion,” said economic analyst Ephraim Njega. “Without the rebasing the debt to GDP ratio would have been at least 82 per cent. After the rebasing the debt to GDP ratio has reduced to 74 per cent.”