Government admits 443,078 unemployed were counted as “fixed discontinuous employees” at end of 2022

unemployment spain

In Spain there are 443,078 inactive workers with permanent discontinuous contracts who are looking for work but are not counted as unemployed. And 61% of them were collecting unemployment benefit at the end of 2022. Fedea -Fundación de Estudios de Economía Aplicada- claims that “effective unemployment” increased by 315,000 people at the end of 2022, compared to the fall of 34,000 as reported by the Ministerio de Trabajo (Department for Work).

After several months of controversy, the government has finally revealed the number of permanent unemployed registered as job seekers on the lists of the State Public Employment Service (SEPE) who are not working. This is something that the parliamentary opposition, think tanks such as Fedea and BBVA Research, and even the trade unions, had repeatedly demanded.
The number of contracts of this type signed since the entry into force of the new labour regulations has increased tenfold compared to the figure recorded in 2019.

The Executive has released this data in response to a parliamentary question asked by two PP senators. The answer breaks down the number of inactive and unemployed permanent and discontinuous workers from January 2022, the first month in which the labour reform took effect, until December 2022. In this period the number of workers in this situation has increased by 80%. Of the 443,078 inactive permanent unemployed who were looking for work in December, 61% (268,402) were receiving unemployment benefits, according to data provided by the SEPE at the request of the PP.

“We were insulted for saying that the government was making up the unemployment figures. Once again it has been discovered that we were right”, commented Juan Bravo, deputy secretary of Economy of the PP, this morning.

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