The Dutch labour market: Preparing for the future
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The well performing labour market has delivered low unemployment and relatively stable wage developments. However, it is divided into a small flexible segment and a large more rigid segment, where the adjustment burden of external shocks falls disproportionally on the first group. At the same time, labour utilisation is relatively low, despite a relatively high overall participation rate, due to a high frequency of part-time employment, a low effective retirement age and a high use of disability benefits. Looking ahead, it is unlikely that the organisation of the labour market will allow the economy to continue reaping fully the benefits of globalisation. That would require a labour market that facilitates the allocation of increasingly scarce labour resources to their best use and mobilises underutilised labour resources to counter the ageing related contraction of the labour force.