employment in Turkey's swiftly growing construction sector increased by 4.6 percent in the second quarter of this year compared to the same period of last year, the Turkish Statistics Institute (turkstat) reported on Tuesday.
According to the TurkStat announcement of the “Construction Labor Force Input Indices,” employment in building construction rose by 6.7 percent, although employment elsewhere in the sector -- such as infrastructure development -- increased by 2 percent in the April-June period over last year. The average number of hours worked per laborer likewise increased by 2.7 percent in the sector in general. Parallel to increased productivity, workers saw a 14.9 percent year-on-year rise in their payroll in the second quarter.
In the past year and a half, Turkey has made substantial strides in its fight against unemployment, which rose under the impact of the 2008-2009 global financial crisis. The rate of unemployment, which jumped to nearly 15 percent at the height of the global financial turmoil, has gradually decreased to pre-crisis levels, below 10 percent. According to the latest official data announced, the unemployment rate in May was 9.4 percent. Most observers expect the country to experience decreased rates in the following months as its economy continues to grow at an almost unparalleled rate.
The country's construction sector is seen as one of the leading factors in the significant economic growth observed in the past eight to nine years. Between 2002 and 2010, Turkish gross domestic product (GDP) grew by an average of nearly 5 percent each year. 2011 began with a high economic growth rate, posting a first-quarter record in the world of 11.6 percent in the first quarter and following with 8.8 percent in the subsequent three months.