Living and working in the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia

05 June 2018

  •   Population: 2 million (2017)
  •   Real GDP growth: 2.9% (2016)

Data source: Eurostat

Eurofound provides research, data and analysis on a wide range of social and work-related topics. This information is largely comparative, but also offers country-specific information for potential candidate countries.

Eurofound seeks to strengthen the ongoing link between its own work and national policy debates and priorities related to the quality of life and work – in Member States and in potential candidate countries. The Instrument for Pre-accession Assistance programme 2014–2020 is an important tool that supports these countries in better preparing the implementation of public administration reforms, improving their economies and achieving the objectives set during the reform process. In this context, Eurofound country profiles offer a wealth of information on key components of working life in the enlargement countries.

2015 Eurofound EWCS survey results in the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia: 44% of respondents consider themselves having right skills to cope with more demanding duties 

Living in the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia

Quality of life

Quality of life

Findings from Eurofound’s European Quality of Life Survey (EQLS) show that many of the indicators about quality of life in the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia are slightly below the EU28 averages. For instance, average happiness in the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia was 6.1 in 2016, lower than the EU28 average of 7.4 (on a scale of 1–10). The share of respondents reporting difficulties in making ends meet reached 55% in 2016, also higher than the EU28 average of 39%.

However, 65% of respondents in the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia felt optimistic about their children’s or grandchildren’s future in 2016, significantly higher than the EU28 average of 57%. Additionally, 30% of respondents in the country rated their health as very good in 2016, which was also better than the EU28 average of 24%. The WHO-5 Mental Well-being Index was also slightly above the EU28 average in the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, reaching 67 in 2016 versus 64 for the EU28 (on a scale of 1–100).

  2003200720112016
Life satisfactionMean (1-10)-5.26.75.1
Taking all things together on a scale of 1 to 10, how happy would you say you are?Mean (1-10)-6.37.26.1
Optimism about own futureAgree & strongly agree---63%
Optimism about children’s or grandchildren’s futureAgree & strongly agree---65%
Take part in sports or physical exerciseAt least once a week--17%14%
In general, how is your health?Very good-28%44%30%
WHO-5 mental wellbeing indexMean (1-100)-546867
Making ends meetWith some difficulty, difficulty, and great difficulty-72%52%55%
I feel I am free to decide how to live my lifeStrongly agree--33%28%
I find it difficult to deal with important problems that come up in my lifeAgree & strongly agree---38%
When things go wrong in my life, it generally takes me a long time to get back to normalAgree & strongly agree---40%

Work-life balance

Work-life balance

The frequency of work–life balance problems in the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia is higher than on average in the EU. For instance, in 2016, 78% of respondents in the country were too tired from work to do household jobs at least several times a month, higher than the EU28 average of 59%. Additionally, 61% of respondents in the country had difficulties to fulfil family responsibilities because of work at least several times a month, which was much higher than the 38% average in the EU28. The least common work–life balance problem was having difficulties to concentrate at work because of family responsibilities, reported by 34% of respondents in the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia in 2016, again above the corresponding EU28 average of 19%.

  2003200720112016
(At least several times a month)   
I have come home from work too tired to do some of the household jobs which need to be doneTotal-64%69%78%
Men-60%63%75%
Women-72%77%84%
      
It has been difficult for me to fulfil my family responsibilities because of the amount of time I spend on the jobTotal-51%48%61%
Men-51%44%60%
Women-51%54%62%
      
I have found it difficult to concentrate at work because of my family responsibilitiesTotal-22%24%34%
Men-21%22%35%
Women-22%26%33%

Quality of society

Quality of society

The Social Exclusion Index score was 2.7 in the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia in 2016, which was the highest score of all the surveyed countries in the EQLS (on a scale of 1–5 where a higher value means a higher incidence of social exclusion). Furthermore, average trust in people was 3.0 in the country in 2016, significantly lower than the respective EU28 average of 5.2 (on a scale of 1–10).

However, the share of respondents reporting a lot of tension between different racial and ethnic groups is lower in the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia than on average in the EU. In 2016, 33% of respondents in the country reported a lot of this type of tension, whereas the EU28 average was 41%. In addition, 45% of respondents in the country felt safe when walking alone after dark in 2016, a significantly larger share than the EU28 average of 35%.

  2003200720112016
Social exclusion indexMean (1-5)-2.72.42.7
Trust in peopleMean (1-10)-3.83.63.0
Involvement in unpaid voluntary work% "at least once a month"--4%4%
Tension between poor and rich people% reporting 'a lot of tension'-0.60.447%
Tension between different racial and ethnic groups% reporting 'a lot of tension'-0.40.433%
I feel safe when I walk alone after darkStrongly agree---45%

Quality of public services

Quality of public services

Quality ratings for seven public services

Note: scale of 1-10, Source: EQLS 2016.

In the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, the perceived quality of all seven public services examined in the EQLS was found to be lower than the various EU28 averages. Furthermore, the quality ratings for the education system (5.3), public transport (5.5) and childcare services (5.4) in the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia were the lowest of all the surveyed countries in the EQLS (on a scale of 1–10). However, public transport got the highest average quality rating in the country in 2016 (5.5), whereas long-term care services and social housing were rated the lowest (both 4.4 out of 10).

  2003200720112016
Health servicesMean (1-10)-4.85.65.0
Education systemMean (1-10)-5.26.15.3
Public transportMean (1-10)-4.76.15.5
Childcare servicesMean (1-10)-4.96.25.4
Long-term care servicesMean (1-10)--5.24.4
Social housingMean (1-10)--4.84.4
State pension systemMean (1-10)-4.66.04.9

Working life in the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia

Working life profile

Working life profile

Eurofound is currently working on a new working life profile for the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia. It will be a comprehensive update on industrial relations and working conditions, aiming to provide the relevant background information on the structures, institutions and regulations related to working life. This includes indicators, data and regulatory systems on the following aspects: actors and institutions, collective and individual employment relations, health and well-being, pay, working time, skills and training, and equality and non-discrimination at work. 

Meanwhile, the previous industrial profile for the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia is available for download.

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