Slovenia should boost efforts to help long-term unemployed


28/10/2016 - Slovenia has implemented important and difficult labour market and pension reforms in response to the global financial crisis. But further efforts are needed to tackle the high level of long-term unemployment and help more older and low-skilled people find work, according to a new OECD report.


Connecting People with Jobs: Slovenia says that unemployment in Slovenia is projected to continue its recent decline to around 7.7% by the end of 2017. But the employment rate of people aged 55-64 is only 35%, 20 percentage points below the OECD average, and one in three jobseekers is over 50 years old.


Long-term unemployment is also well above the OECD average, with one in two jobseekers out of work for more than a year and one in three for more than two years.


The system in Slovenia is geared well to help jobseekers who are readily employable but is less effective at helping others who are often and increasingly parked on social assistance and more recently partial disability benefits for a long time. With the size of this group gradually increasing, a better approach is needed to help them into work.


To address these challenges, the OECD recommends that Slovenia:

  • Strengthen the connection between the Employment Service and the Centres of Social Work by shifting responsibilities to overcome the separation of benefit administration and counselling, or even partially merging the two authorities.
  • Enable the Employment Service to help harder-to-place jobseekers by freeing up time for caseworkers to counsel these jobseekers and help them into training and work, as well as deal with additional social and health problems.
  • Tackle high long-term unemploymentby making social assistance benefits dependent upon looking for work and enabling people to maintain some benefits over a longer period when they find work.
  • Promote longer working lives through further changes in the unemployment, pension and disability benefit system as well as the labour law to encourage later retirement.


More information on OECD work on activation and active labour market policies is available at


Journalists should contact Mark Pearson (, Kristine Langenbucher ( or Christopher Prinz ( of the OECD’s Directorate for Employment, Labour and Social Affairs, or OECD’s Media division (; tel. + 33 1 45 24 81 18).


Working with over 100 countries, the OECD is a global policy forum that promotes policies to improve the economic and social well-being of people around the world.


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