Household Income and Expenditure Surveys (HIES) provide a wealth of information with both macro-and microeconomic applications, including rebasing the household component to GDP and the consumer price index, as well as providing insight into household production and consumption habits. Kiribati’s 2019/20 Household Income and Expenditure Survey – the second since its inaugural in 2006 – has resulted in numerous statistical outputs in the areas of household income and expenditure, food consumption, food security and poverty (in press). The report titled ‘Labour in Kiribati based on analysis of the 2019/20 household income and expenditure survey’ was published in July 2022 and is the most recent analytical product resulting from Kiribati’s 2019/20 HIES.

The total household population in Kiribati was estimated to be 118,480 persons, of whom, 59,984 were male and 58,496 were female. Two thirds (64.5%) of population were at working-age (aged 15+), totalling 76,910 persons. In addition, 27,540 persons of working-age were in the labour force, marking an overall national labour force participation rate (LFPR) of 35.8%. There were 16,353 men and 11,187 women in the labour force, resulting in an average LFPR of 43.1% for men and 28.7% for women.

In the labour force, 25,172 were in employment, of which, 59.4% (14,956 persons) were male workers and 40.6% (or 10,217 persons) were female workers. Youth (aged 15–24) made up 16.7% of all employed persons. Meanwhile, 47.6% of employed persons were informally employed. Some 2,400 persons were unemployed, marking the average unemployment rate at 8.6%. Additionally, 1,033 persons between ages 15 and 24 years were unemployed, marking the youth unemployment rate at 22.5%. Half of young men and women (49.8%) were not in employment, education or training (NEET).

The Kiribati National Statistics Office, the International Labour Organization (ILO) and the Pacific Community (SPC) are acknowledged for their important contribution to the Kiribati 2019/20 HIES and the production of the report ‘Labour in Kiribati based on analysis of the 2019/20 household income and expenditure survey’.

Labour in Kiribati based on 2019/20 HIES