TENDENCIES IN LITHUANIAN LABOUR MARKET UNDER THE IMPACT OF ECONOMIC RECESSION
Under the conditions of globalisation countries can not function sequestered and be unaffected by the various processes in the world. The global crisis made the remarkable impact on the countries’ economic and social spheres. The situation in European Union (EU) countries’ labour markets became unstable. Under the pressure of global economic recession in all EU erected one of the biggest social and economic problems – unemployment, which is understood as misbalance of demand and supply of labour force. Increase of unemployment is entailed by many social, demographic, psychological problems.
During last year unemployment rate in EU countries inceased very signiﬁcant. According to the International Labour Organization (ILO) developed economies and the European Union saw the largest increase in the regional unemployment rate – about 3.5 million people lost their jobs in this region this year. For this reason this period is called „Global Job Crisis“.
From 2002 years Lithuanian economy has grown faster than in any period and there were seen positive development trends - GDP was rising, investments were growing up. Furthermore the labour market in Lithuania has in the recent past been characterised also by positive changes - the unemployment was falling, wages were growing up. Fast developing market was causing speciﬁc requirements for the human resources, especially for the universities’ graduates. Furthermore, the business sector forms new and speciﬁc requirements for the human resources. At that time in politicians’ and scientists’ discussions the main problem was how to solve the lack of labour force which is the main brake for the development of country’s economy. The shortage of qualiﬁed labour force was felt especially in the sectors which need highly qualiﬁed employees.
In the end of 2008 the economic recession affected Lithuanian labour market. The companies started to respond to the challenges which were rising under the inﬂuence of economic downturn. Some of the companies were looking for the possible ways to keep their qualiﬁed labour force or use the current downtime for more education and training but the big part of companies immediately reduced their workforces to cut costs, cut production or even closed the factories. The economic recession touched not only the segment of unskilled labour force but highly qualiﬁed labour force as well.
In this article the situation in Lithuanian labour market is analyzed. This article strives to identify the tendencies in Lithuanian labour market under the impact of global economic recession in EU context. The made research showed that the economic downturn inﬂuenced the big changes in Lithuanian labour market and it is also further widening employment gaps between Lithuanian regions. The overall challenge is to ﬁnd efﬁcient and sustainable responses to the economic slowdown and reduce the multiple short – term and long - term consequences on the labour market.
The analysis is made upon the scientiﬁc literature and research is this ﬁeld, statistical data and comparative analysis of the labour market’s indicators in EU countries and Lithuania.