As German Chancellor Angela Merkel addresses world leaders at the World Economic Forum, Spain and Greece continue to compete for the title of “Worst Youth Unemployment in the EU.”

Spain’s unemployment rate jumped to a record 26 percent in the fourth quarter of 2012, with youth unemployment peaking at 59.8 percent, the country’s National Statistics Institute said Thursday.

Greece & Spain Almost Tied in Record Shattering Youth Unemployment RatesAt this time last year, the youth unemployment rate in Spain was 50 percent.

Meanwhile, recent data shows Greece’s national unemployment rate has risen to 26.8 percent, the highest in the EU, with a youth unemployment rate of 60 percent, according to reports from both The Telegraph and the BBC.

Luckily, these rates — more than double the average in neighboring EU countries — have not gone unnoticed by Euro leaders. Indeed, even Chancellor Merkel noted in her Davos speech that one of the biggest “burdens” weighing on the EU is its youth unemployment.

Greece & Spain Almost Tied in Record Shattering Youth Unemployment Rates

Courtesy Zero Hedge

Obviously, the EU must address its long-term youth unemployment problem. As noted by both TheBlaze and Zero Hedge, the last thing the 27-member union needs right now is hordes of politically disillusioned, angry, and unemployed youths roaming the streets. That’s when things start to get dangerous.

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Featured image courtesy Getty Images. This post has been updated.