The Concept and Trajectory of Active Inclusion: Lithuanian Case
Keywords: active inclusion, minimum income, inclusive labour market, social policy
AbstractThe article analyses the two dimensions of Active Inclusion Strategy (the provision of adequate income and inclusive labour market) in the country (due to limitation of the scope of the article, the empirical part does not reflect the social services dimension). The analysis revealed that during the period of 2009–2017, the adequacy of the guaranteed minimum income in Lithuania was constantly decreasing, while the differences between persons with different family status were widening. The minimum needs of some population groups remain unmet: in 2018, both the average social benefit and unemployment benefit in Lithuania were below the absolute poverty line, and the at-riskof-poverty rate of the unemployed in Lithuania was as high as 62.3%. The analysis also showed that the labour market in Lithuania is not sufficiently inclusive due to relatively low and non-motivating wages. The unemployment trap rate in Lithuania remained high throughout 2009–2018; in 2017, the indicator was by 15 percentage points higher than the EU-28 average. The high unemployment trap rate in the country indicates that there is a strong incentive to remain unemployed as income from employment will only be slightly higher than the unemployment benefits. The high incidence of involuntary part-time work in Lithuania (30.6% in 2017) and the decline in the transition from temporary to permanent employment contracts since 2011 also indicate that the Lithuanian labour market is not sufficiently inclusive.