Montenegro, Recent Economic Developments, Employment and Wages

The COVID-19 pandemic continued to bring uncertainties in 2021 for employment, and affected the labour market indicators. Restrictions in terms of mobility were in force at the beginning of the year, dealing with inter-city movement and working hours of business premises. Mass immunisation of the population started from May and majority of measures dealing with mobility of population were abolished, which consequently led to strengthening of the economic activity and increasing of the number of employed at the labour market.

The Montenegro Statistics Administration – MONSTAT, has adopted a revised methodology for the Labour Force Survey, but is facing challenges in producing the survey. According to the available data, the unemployment rate was 17.1 percent for the nine months of 2021, while in the third quarter alone recorded a drop to 14.8 percent. A strong jump in employment of 8.1 percent was also recorded in Q3 of 2021, relative to the same quarter of 2020, according to the Labour Force Survey.

According to the data of the Montenegro Employment Office, number of unemployed at the end of 2021 was 57,386, while the registered unemployment rate was 24.7 percent, or 4.3 percentage points higher relative to the end of 2020. In accordance with the revised administrative data of MONSTAT, average number of employed in the period January- November 2021 was 186,934, which is 4.9 percent higher than in the same period of 2020. Employment grew the most in sectors of Information and communication (15.4 percent), Agriculture (15.2 percent), and Real estate activities (11.3 percent). The average wage for first 11 months of 2021 was 793 euro, or 531 euro net wage, which is an increase of 1.4 percent and 1.5 percent respectively, relative to the comparative period of 2020. The strongest net wage increase for 11 months of 2021 is recorded in the sectors of Construction (6.3 percent), Human health and social work activities (3.3 percent), and Education (2.2 percent).

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