Unemployment benefits to be cut next year, says Welfare Minister

The duration and amount of unemployment benefits are to be cut starting next year, said Welfare Minister Ramona Petraviča (KPV LV) appearing on LTV September 16.

She said that the maximum duration for which people can receive unemployment benefits is to be cut to eight months from the current nine. 

As for the amount, the benefits are to be paid in full for the first two months, for 75% for the next two months, for 50% for the next two and 45% for the final two.

Currently benefits are paid in full for the first three months, while the amount is cut to 75% for the next three and to 50% for the final three months of the benefit duration.

"I wouldn't suggest this is a profound change, but it will motivate people to return to the job market more quickly," said Petraviča. She said that the on the average people receive unemployment benefits for 4.5 months.

This measure would save some €12 million from the state budget next year, the minister said. 

In the 2nd quarter of 2019 Latvia's unemployment rate was 6.4%, down 1.3% on year, according to the Central Statistics Office. 

You can find out more about unemployment benefits in Latvia at the State Social Insurance Agency website

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