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OECD states that the expansion of tertiary studies will boost jobs and tax revenues

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07 September 2010 01:00

Education is an essential investment for responding to changes in technology and demographics that are reshaping labour markets, states OECD Secretary-General Angel Curria launching the annual report, Education at a Glance.

In countries hit early by the recession, those with lower levels of education had more difficulty finding and keeping a job with young people particularly affected. Those who did not complete secondary education experienced a five percentage point increase in unemployment between 2008 and 2009.The report states that in general education has a substantial impact on employment prospects. On average across OECD countries, close to 85 percent of the population with tertiary education is employed. This falls to just over 76 percent for people with upper secondary and post-secondary non-tertiary education and to just 56 percent for those without an upper secondary education.


In Ireland unemployment rates amongst 25 to 64 year olds (available to the labour force) increased across all three levels of educational attainment. Unemployment was highest for those whose educational attainment was below upper secondary level with 5.7 percent unemployed in 2006, 6.1 percent in 2007 and 8.2 percent in 2008. For those with upper secondary level education unemployment rose from 3.2 percent in 2006 to 3.5 percent in 2007 and to 4.8 percent in 2008. Those with tertiary education also experienced an increase in unemployment from 2.2 percent in 2006 to 2.3 percent in 2007 to 3 percent in 2008.


The report highlighted that investing public resources in tertiary education makes a good long term investment as “on average across OECD countries, a man with a tertiary level of education will generate USD 119,000 more in income taxes and social contributions over his working life than someone with just an upper secondary education”.