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UN labour agency: global jobless number topped 200 million in 2013, job growth lags workforce

A protestor plays drum as she wears a t-shirt reading

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A protestor plays drum as she wears a t-shirt reading "public healthcare system" and "No to financial cuts" during a demonstration against the government's plans to part privatize the regional healthcare system in Madrid, Spain, Sunday, Jan. 19, 2014. (AP Photo/Andres Kudacki)

GENEVA - The United Nations' labour agency says the number of unemployed people around the world rose above 200 million last year as job opportunities failed to grow at the same pace as the global workforce.

The International Labor Organization said Monday that an estimated 201.8 million people were unemployed in 2013. That's 4.9 million more than the previous year.

An annual ILO report points to an uneven global economic recovery and says East and South Asia together accounted for more than 45 per cent of last year's increase.

The agency puts last year's global unemployment rate at 6 per cent, unchanged from 2012. It says it expects little improvement this year, projecting that the jobless rate will edge up to 6.1 per cent and the number of unemployed will rise another 4.2 million.

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