The currently observed unemployment rates are lower than expected. Forecasts indicated that the percentage of unemployed people would reach from 7.5 percent to even 10 percent. However, the Central Statistical Office reports that the unemployment rate in April was at the level of 6.2 percent. Experts point out that these results are not entirely true. They point to data collection methodologies and exclude those who have moved to agriculture and who are considered to be "hidden unemployed". If these people were included in the group of the unemployed, the unemployment rate would reach the predicted value of 7.5 percent. Yet even the official figures show that we have not managed to get back to the numbers we saw in pre-pandemic unemployment – and we are not going to come back to them any time soon.
"It seems that we will not make up for it in the next year. Unemployment will not return to the rates observed in 2019, i.e. to the level of 5.2 percent," Paula Kukołowicz, analyst of the Polish Economic Institute, assessed.
In her opinion, the unemployment rates in the other EU Member States are indeed much higher, and Eurostat data show that we have also recorded an increase in employment.
"However, it should be remembered that these indicators – due to the programs that were supposed to protect the labor market, as well as various forms of employment – are a source of debt. Poland is a country where the highest percentage of people work based on non-standard forms. These are mainly people who have switched to self-employment. They have often been forced to do so – so they work in conditions they did not want to work in. So we have lower unemployment rates and a higher self-employment rate – but a significant proportion of employees work in a form that we would not like them to work in, taking into account the contributions to this work. We should also take this into account when analyzing the unemployment level in Poland," Kukołowicz emphasized.