Egyptian workers sew garments together at a cotton garment factory in Cairo (Reuters)
Egypt's unemployment rate inched downward to 12.7 percent in the first quarter of 2016 compared to 12.8 percent registered in both the first and last quarters of 2015, official statistics agency CAPMAS announced on Sunday.
Egyptian officials hope to reduce unemployment to less than 10 percent and are targeting a growth rate of at least 6 percent by the end of the 2018/19 fiscal year.
According to the ministry of planning, Egypt's GDP growth rate slowed to 2.2 percent in the final quarter of 2015, compared to 3.7 percent during the same period a year earlier.
Unemployment among 15-29 year olds reached 27.3 percent of the workforce.
Compared to the first quarter of 2015, the Egyptian workforce grew 2.6 percent to a record 28.4 million people in the first quarter of 2016.
The CAPMAS report noted that unemployment among females is 25.7 percent, while unemployment among males is 8.9 percent.
Urban unemployment amounted to15.2 percent, compared to 10.9 percent in rural areas.