Zimbabwe unemployment soars to 94%


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HARARE (AFP) — Zimbabwe's unemployment rate has spiked to 94 percent, meaning that fewer than half a million people in the country are formally employed, the UN's humanitarian arm said Thursday.
"At close of 2008, only six percent of the population was formally employed, down from 30 percent in 2003," said a report from the UN's Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA).
Out of the country's 12 million people, only 480,000 have formal jobs, down from 3.6 million in 2003, the report said.
"The most obvious indicator of the current decline is the staggering inflation rate," last estimated at 231 million percent in July, it said.
The new data was contained in an appeal by OCHA for 35 agencies working in the country, seeking 550 million US dollars (420 million euros) to assist the 5.1 million Zimbabweans in need of food aid.
The once-dynamic economy has shrunk by more than 45 percent over the past five years, leaving half of Zimbabwe's urban population relying on remittances from friends and family overseas, the report said.
An estimated three million Zimbabweans have fled the country's economic and political instability, and are now supporting their families with both cash and food.
"Importantly, in 2008 remittances from Zimbabweans in neighbouring countries -- South Africa, Botswana, Zambia, Namibia and Mozambique -- were in the form of food and essential household commodities, as well as cash," the report said.
The economic collapse has also made it difficult for aid agencies to work in Zimbabwe, it added, citing high prices for supplies, troubles ensuring payment of salaries, spotty access to food for staff and fuel shortages.
Adding to Zimbabwe's woes are consecutive years of drought and a land reform programme launched in 2000, in which some mostly 4,000 white-owned commercial farms were seized and redistributed to blacks.
The scheme has punched a gapping hole in agricultural production, which once accounted for 40 percent of the economy, as most of the new beneficiaries lack both farming equipment and expertise.

Now that's a crisis! :sick:


/ˈɪzəˌbɛl/ pink 5
And why is Mugabe still heading even after an obvious economic mismanagement? Oh yeah, because it's supposedly other countries' fault...


The Hierophant
That's brilliant. Take the farms away from the farmers just to give them to the black people that don't have the equipment and knowhow to run a farm. Oh, that's going to back fire? Fuck it! Let's ask America for their money! Wait, they're broke too? Shit.
It's crazy, because at one point and time Zimbabwe was projected to be the democratic diamond of Africa, and now...well now it hardly counts as a country. There needs to be some serious reform in that country, and I'd hate to say it, but I think atleast one form of coup is due.


Son of Liberty
I can agree that is insane, I mean heck the great depression in the US was a panick and If I recal right unemployment was only at 40%+/-. ANything in the 90's just screams for a need of reform. But then again even if they did stage a coup.... where would they get the funds to reform their gov't? That just opens them up for more corruption and dissapointment as their country gets sold to the highest bidder basically.