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Indonesian jobless predicted to increase 1 million
Last Updated(Beijing Time):2007-03-16 14:26

The Indonesian government has predicted the total number of unemployed to rise by one million this year from last year's figure of 10.8 million people, local press said Friday.

The government said it is optimistic that 1.5 million new jobs will be created this year. But this figure will not be enough to swallow up all of the 2.5 million job-seekers also expected, reported national newspaper The Jakarta Post.

Some 2.3 million of the 2.5 million new job-seekers are expected to be fresh graduates and dropouts from high schools and universities. The remaining 200,000 were victims of natural disasters in East Java, East Nusa Tenggara, West Sumatra and Yogyakarta.

"I am optimistic that we can provide 1.5 million new jobs ... so that we can push unemployment down to the minimum," Manpower and Transmigration Minister Erman Suparno was quoted as saying.

He said his office also set the goal of sending 750,000 new workers overseas and resettling at least 10,200 poor families to less populated transmigration areas on islands outside Java and Bali.

A fund of 51 trillion rupiah (5.66 billion U.S. dollars) is earmarked for the employment program, increased from 42 trillion rupiah last year.

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