2017 Review of Employment and Social Developments in Europe – Questions and Answers

How is the labour market and social situation in the EU developing? The labour market recovery is continuing and strengthening further. During the four years of recovery following the recent crisis, economic growth has been moderate but steady. Since 2013, 10 million net jobs have been created in the EU, and employment growth has been rather strong relative to the pace of GDP growth over the last two years. In the first quarter of 2017, 234.2 million people were in employment in the EU (see chart 1), the highest number on record. Likewise, the employment rate has exceeded the pre-crisis level and is now the highest one ever recorded (71.1% of the population aged 20 to 64 in 2016). As a result of the latest increases, the 75% employment rate set as the “Europe 2020” target is within reach, assuming that the recent trend continues. Chart 1: EU employment rate exceeded its 2008 value in 2016.(continue)