For the purposes of exercising its functions under Chapter 34 of the Executive Law, the Division of Research and Statistics based on the mandate of Ministry of Labour, has the statutory power to collect statistics. The Division regularly collects, compiles, analyzes, and publishes labour statistics, which is progressively expanded in accordance with its resources to cover the following subjects as stated below:

  1. Economically active population, employment, unemployment, and where possible visible underemployment;
  2. Structure and distribution of the economically active population, for detailed analysis and to serve as benchmark data;
  3. Average earnings and hours of work (hours actually worked or hours paid for and, where appropriate, time rates of wages and normal hours of work;
  4. Wage structure and distribution;
  5. Labour cost;
  6. Consumer price indices;
  7. Occupational injuries and, as far as possible, occupational diseases; and viii) industrial disputes.

Without limiting the scope of the preceding provision, the Ministry shall be charged in particular with having available current statistics relating to: i) Actual earning in the various industries and occupations; ii) Current rates of wages in various industries and occupations; and iii) The cost of living, including cost-of-living index numbers, for various economic groups of different consumption patterns.

Given the authority of the Ministry in terms of data collection, the Division has a statutory mandate to request and collect data from any person, corporation, partnership, or other legal entity, Ministry, Bureau, or agency of government which it may deem necessary for the compilation of statistics which it has the duty of collecting under this section. e) Any person, Ministry, Bureau or agency of government which receives a request from the Ministry under this section shall comply with such request by furnishing accurate information within a reasonable time. f) Any person, corporation, partnership or other legal entity that fails to respond to a request for information under this section within a reasonable time shall be subject to a fine of not less than One Thousand United States Dollars and not more than One Thousand United States Dollars.

Privacy protection

Information obtained pursuant to this section shall be used by the Ministry only for the purpose of compiling statistics. b) Neither the Ministry nor any official engaged within it shall divulge or publish in any way information gathered under this section in such a way that it would disclose the private affairs of any person.

Based on statutory mandate of the Ministry, the Division has successfully conducted two Labour Force Surveys, with the first conducted in 2010 and the second round between 2016 and 2017. Another key survey conducted on a regular basis which has now become our routine work is done on a quarterly basis. This survey focuses on collection information on establishments/entities economic activities during each quarter.

Labour Force Survey

A Labour Force Survey is a survey conducted in a number of countries designed to capture data about the labour market. It is a survey conducted among private households for the purpose of gathering information about the labour force under European Framework Regulation (EC) No. 577/1998.  Its main objective is that of dividing the 15+ year old population into three mutually exclusive groups: employed, unemployed, and inactive, and hence provides descriptive information on each of these groups.

Liberia conducted its first Labour Force Survey in 2010 and a second was conducted in 2016/2017. Data processing is currently ongoing and will be followed by analysis and dissemination. The report for the 2010 Labour Force Survey can be accessed online through google or on ILO website.

Objectives of a labour force survey

  • Determine the size and composition of the labor force, classified by key variables such as sex, age. County, education, skill levels, institutional sector, industry, occupation and employment status.
  • Provide details on the various components of the labor force (the employed, unemployed, with special information on those who are underemployed).
  • Provide details on the informal sector.
  • Determine labor force participation rates and unemployment rates classified by age and sex.
  • Give an insight into the job search activities of the unemployed and underemployed.
  • Provide details of inactive persons classified by age, sex, county and type.
  • Determine the extent of child labor in the country, and the activities in which children are engaged.

The Quarterly Establishments Survey (QES)

The Quarterly Establishments Survey (QES) is a research that provides time series data on the levels, trends and patterns of labour market indicators associated with the formal sector of the Liberian economy. This research/survey gives the Ministry an idea of the demand and supply side of our economy during the period.  Based on the mandate from the executive law, chapter 34 given to the Ministry of Labour, every establishment/entity with an employment size of at least five (5) persons, must provide to the Division of statistics through a questionnaire that was designed, a complete statistics on the current status of their establishment/entity in terms of employment size, hours of work, occupational injuries, number of hires, etc.

It is estimated from the 2007 Establishments survey that was conducted by the Liberia Institute of Statistics and Geo-Information Services (LISGIS) that there more than fifteen thousand (15,000) operating in the Liberia. Therefore, any private and public sector establishment that meets the criteria stated above must provide on the regular basis statistics on the economic status of each establishment operating in the country.

Objectives of the Quarterly Establishment Survey

  • To collect needed data on wages, aggregate income, occupational injuries, hours of work, number of hires, employment size, etc.
  • To improve the skills capacity of the staff of the Ministry in collecting, processing, analyzing, and reporting on occupational injuries, wages, hours or work, number of hires, aggregate income, etc.
  • To measure the demand and supply side of our economy.

Key achievements of the Division

  • Conducted the first ever Labour Force and Human Rights in 2010 and second round 2016/2017.
  • In collaboration with LISGIS conducted in 2012, the School-To-Work- Transition Survey and repeated in 2014.
  • Conducted a survey on the 150-day action plan of government of Liberia in 2012.

Planned activities for 2019

The Division has planned the following key activities for period 2019:

  • Coding, data entry of the 2016/2017 Labour Force and Human Rights Survey(LFHRS)
  • Analysis and report writing of the 2016/2017 Labour Force and Human Rights Survey
  • Launching and dissemination the 2016/2017 LFHRS results.
  • Nationwide awareness for the Quarterly Establishments Survey.
  • Conduct feasibility study for the establishment of the Labour Market Information System (LMIS).
  • Establish the LMIS

The Division is currently headed by an Assistant Minister, appointed by the President of Liberia and by a Director.