Countries With the Best (and Worst) Jobs

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7. Nepal
> Pct. of adults with “good” jobs:
8%
> Pct. of adults with “great” jobs: 1%
> GDP per capita: $2,044
> Life expectancy: 68.4 years

This spring, Nepal sustained a 7.8 magnitude earthquake, which killed thousands and dealt serious structural damage to the Himalayan nation’s agrarian economy. One Wall Street Journal report estimated the damage from the earthquake could exceed the nation’s $20 billion annual GDP. This is bad news for an already struggling economy with limited job opportunities. Just 8% of Nepalese adults have stable, full-time jobs. Well-educated populations tend to have higher employment rates as well as a higher share of adults in good jobs. In Nepal, just 2.3% of the adult population has the equivalent of a college degree, versus more than 30% of the U.S. adult population.

ALSO READ: America’s Fastest Shrinking Jobs

6. Malawi
> Pct. of adults with “good” jobs:
7%
> Pct. of adults with “great” jobs: 2%
> GDP per capita: $715
> Life expectancy: 55.2 years

Developing countries are often unable to provide full-time jobs for citizens, and Malawi is no exception. Malawi’s economy is driven primarily by agriculture, and depends heavily on foreign aid. Good jobs provide stable, full-time employment, but agricultural workers are often self-employed subsistence farmers. Just 7% of Malawi adults have a job that provides at least 30 hours of work a week and a steady paycheck, tied as the fifth worst country for gainful employment. Further, only 2% of adults in Malawi feel engaged and enthusiastic about their work. Malawians have a life expectancy of just 55.2 years, and more than half of the population lives in poverty.

5. Guinea
> Pct. of adults with “good” jobs:
7%
> Pct. of adults with “great” jobs: 2%
> GDP per capita: $1,265
> Life expectancy: 56.1 years

Just 7% of Guinea adults have a job with at least 30 hours of work a week and a steady paycheck, making it one of the worst countries in the world for gainful employment. Guinea has the largest deposit of the mineral bauxite of any country and accounts for more than one-third of the world’s known reserves. Mining accounts for about 26% of Guinea’s GDP, which each year amounts to $1,265 per capita. Together with agriculture, mining makes up about half of Guinea’s economy. Agricultural workers are frequently self-employed subsistence farmers, and due to corruption and political unrest, the country’s mining industry is anything but stable. This could partly explain the lack of great jobs, which not only provide full-time, stable employment, but are also engaging and meaningful. In Guinea’s mining- and agriculture-oriented economy, just 2% of adults find meaning in their work. Despite its rich natural resources, most of Guinea’s residents live below the poverty line.

ALSO READ: America’s Fastest Growing Jobs

4. Niger
> Pct. of adults with “good” jobs:
7%
> Pct. of adults with “great” jobs: 1%
> GDP per capita: $876
> Life expectancy: 58.4 years

Niger is adjacent to Chad and Mali, two other nations with relatively few steady employment opportunities. While just 7% of Niger’s adult population has a job with at least 30 hours a week of work and a steady paycheck, only one out of every 100 adults in the country has a job that is both steady and engaging. Nearly half of Niger’s population lives below the poverty line, and the average resident lives to be only 58 years old, some of the worst such measures in the world. The UN rates Niger as one of the least developed nations in the world.