Koreans Work Longest Hours in the World
Korean workers put in the longest hours in the world yet their productivity remains just 68 percent of that of U.S. workers, the International Labor Organization said on Monday.
That means it takes a Korean worker an hour and a half to do what an American needs just one hour to do.
According to the ILO's "Key Indicators of the Labor Market" report, the average Korean worker toils 2,305 hours per year. That's the most of 54 surveyed countries.
Six Asian nations have annual work hours per person of greater than 2,200 hours -- Korea, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Hong Kong, Malaysia and Thailand.
However, the report said Korea's annual work hours are shrinking at the fastest pace in the world. The largest decrease in annual labor hours was found in Korea, followed by Ireland, Japan, France and Spain.
Meanwhile, the productivity gap between the U.S. and Korea is still wide, though it has been closing steadily.
The ILO said Korean productivity, which is the country's GDP divided by the number of people employed, increased from 28 percent of that of American workers in 1980 to 68 percent in 2005.
The annual average productivity growth rate in Korea was 4.7 percent, the third fastest of 122 countries, following Bosnia and Herzegovina with 7.8 percent and China with 5.7 percent.
When it comes to productivity, the U.S. ranked first. U.S. workers produced US$63,885 of wealth per person in 2006, followed by Ireland with $55,986, Luxembourg with $55,641, Belgium with $55,235 and France with $54,609.
However, Americans work longer hours than workers in other advanced nations. When productivity is measured by wealth produced per hour, Norway ranked first with $37.99. Also on the list were the U.S. with $35.63 and France with $35.08.
Tuesday, September 04, 2007
This doesn't surprise me at all.