Thursday 15th April 2021 | ALVARO MONFORT; translation MIKE SMITH
The re-opening of the hospitality sector and the Easter holidays resulted in a drop in unemployment in Xàbia during March, falling to 1,971, a reduction of 121 on February. This is the first fall since last summer.
It is undoubtedly very good news for several reasons. The first and foremost is that it is the first time since July 2020 that this terrible statistic has fallen and it is a necessary relief from the data that was becoming both increasingly discouraging and increasingly similar to the figures that the municipality suffered during the last great crisis of 2012.
The data for March 2021 continues to be high compared to that of March 2019 – before the pandemic – when Xàbia registered 1,398 unemployed, 573 less than now. On that occasion, the Easter holidays occurred in April, so it cannot be considered that these were one of the incentives for the good figures at that time, as it may have been on this occasion.
Another reason to consider the decline as something positive is that the moment in which it has occurred: spring. At the end of the hardest months for the local economy and at the beginning of the boom months (but hard work for the people of Xàbia). The high season is approaching and the tourism character of the town continues to be its great economic engine today. Alternatives are emerging to exploit other routes, but until these manage to establish themselves as a solid value for the future and have full support at the local level, the tourism sector will continue to be the greatest bastion. Hopefully, the evolution of the pandemic, the progression of the vaccination campaign, and the continued responsibility of the people will help to further reduce unemployment in Xàbia over the coming months.
Finally, the decrease of more than 100 people in the last month reduces the average rise in unemployment of some 200 people a month since August.
As always, comprehensive data has been supplied by the State Public Employment Service (SEPE) and therefore only includes those who are registered, not those who work on the black without the regulations associated with their type of employment. Thus, the actual figures for unemployment is always higher than the official number. And to this must be added the difficulty of including those who have been laid off due to the pandemic and find themselves in a complex situation when making their annual tax return.
Unemployment March 2021: by age and gender
During March 2021, 1,123 women and 848 men were unemployed.
The over 45s was the most affected age group with 958 unemployed (38 less than February) of which 553 were women and 405 men.
The 25-44 age group had a total of 838 unemployed (down 69 on February) of which 486 were women and 352 men.
Finally, the under 25 age group had 175 registered unemployed (14 less than February) of which 84 were women and 91 were men.
In terms of new employment contracts, 541 were signed during March, 209 more than February, of which 432 were temporary contracts (highlighting the precariousness of employment these days) and 57 moved from temporary to permanent contracts. A total of 136 people without a prior job registered with SEPE last month.
Unemployment March 2021: by economic sector
Xàbia continues to register the highest amount of unemployment in the Services sector with 1,558 people, albeit 116 less than February. The Construction sector continues to fall, although this time the decrease is not so marked with 204, two less than February. The Industry sector also experienced a very small decease of a single person to 53. And finally, unemployment in the Fishing and Agricultural sector fell to 20 people, 4 down from the previous month.
With 1,971 people unemployed, Xàbia remains third amongst the municipalities of the Marina Alta behind Dénia (4,304) and Calp (2,137).