Goal 8: Decent work and economic growth
Over the past 25 years the number of workers living in extreme poverty has declined dramatically, despite the lasting impact of the 2008 economic crisis and global recession. In developing countries, the middle class now makes up more than 34 percent of total employment – a number that has almost tripled between 1991 and 2015.
However, as the global economy continues to recover we are seeing slower growth, widening inequalities, and not enough jobs to keep up with a growing labour force. According to the International Labour Organization, more than 204 million people were unemployed in 2015.
The SDGs promote sustained economic growth, higher levels of productivity and technological innovation. Encouraging entrepreneurship and job creation are key to this, as are effective measures to eradicate forced labour, slavery and human trafficking. With these targets in mind, the goal is to achieve full and productive employment, and decent work, for all women and men by 2030.
The global unemployment rate stood at 5.6 percent in 2017, corresponding to 192.7 million unemployed persons.
Unemployment among youth (aged 15 to 24) reached 13 percent in 2014, nearly three times higher than the rate for adults.
In 2017 there were around 300 million workers in extreme poverty, living on less than US$1.90 per day.
470 million jobs will be needed to absorb new entrants to the labour market between 2016 and 2030.
Only 29 percent of the global population has comprehensive social security; the other 71 percent are not, or only partially, protected.
A recent Harvard study found that gender equality in the labour force could add US$28 trillion to the global economy by 2025.