Results Labour Force Survey 2018


Results Labour Force Survey 2018

A decreasing migration trend manifests in a lower unemployment rate.

In the month of September 2018, the Central Bureau of Statistics (CBS) conducted the Labour Force Survey (LFS) on Curaçao. The LFS is an annual household survey that is held annually in September/October since 1987 to measure the recent trends on the local labour market, such as the unemployment rate, the participation level, the number of the employed population and those looking for employment.

Since 2017, Curaçao has experienced negative migration with more people leaving than entering the country. This trend is now evident in the labour numbers recorded in 2018 as decreases were noted across all the different employment status: employed, unemployed and economically inactive population

The labour market, which consists of, those employed and unemployed has decreased from 73,147 to 70,153, which constitutes a decrease of 2,994 persons. In absolute numbers, the largest decrease happened in the employed population, yet the highest impact was felt in the unemployed population which decreased by 8.6 percentage points from 10,313 in 2017 to 9,424 in 2018.  The labour market shows a decrease in the unemployment rate from 14.1 percent in 2017 to 13.4 percent in 2018.

The major reason for being unemployed is still the bad economy but its share among those unemployed has increased from 34.6 percent to 52.2 percent. This is an indication of a growing dissatisfaction with the economy and the job market and it is also an indicator of negative migration trends. A sign of increasing emigration and decreasing immigration is a precursor of dissatisfaction resulting in people leaving the island to find employment somewhere else or not moving to the island as there is no work to be found.

The male unemployment rate had the biggest decrease from 12.9 to 11.3 percent while the female unemployment rate has remained the same with just 0.2% increase to 15.4%. This might be due to the size of the two groups. The male unemployed population decreased by 14% while the female unemployed population decreased by 4.6%.

Youth unemployment keeps improving and has reached a record low in the last 5 years of 29.3 percent.

CBS would like to thank all the households who participated and contributed to a successful survey.

You can stay up to date on all the ongoing CBS surveys and the results on the front page of the CBS website (, including the results for the Labour Force Survey 2018.