Press Employment of older people in Germany and the EU markedly up in the last 10 years

Press release No. N003 of 19 January 2023

  • Share of 55 to 64 year old people in employment in Germany up 10 percentage points to 72% in 2021; 60% on an EU average
  • Employment of older people increases with higher educational level
  • Federal Statistical Office publishes new podcast: “Arbeitskräftemangel: Welche Potenziale bietet eine alternde Gesellschaft?” (Labour shortage: what potential is offered by an ageing society?)

WIESBADEN – To cope with the skilled labour shortage, stronger labour force participation of older people is discussed, among other things. More and more older people are in employment in Germany and the European Union (EU). The employment rate of the 55 to 64 year olds in Germany rose markedly within ten years from 62% in 2012 to just under 72% in 2021. In the same period, the employment rate of the 55 to 64 year olds in the EU was up from 47% to 60%. This is reported by the Federal Statistical Office (Destatis) based on the microcensus and data from the European labour force survey and from Eurostat, the EU statistical office. This means that in Germany markedly more 55 to 64 year olds are in employment than on an EU average. Higher rates were recorded only in the Scandinavian EU countries of Sweden (77%) and Denmark (72%). “It is however not expected that a higher labour force participation of older people can offset the fact that the younger population is decreasing and that consequently there will be a much smaller labour force in these age groups”, explains Frank Schüller, labour market expert at the Federal Statistical Office, in view of the skilled labour debate.


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