Enterprise Zone helps to cut unemployment

The number of people employed in the North East is at a record high, standing at 1.22million.

Friday, 21st July 2017, 7:50 am
Updated Monday, 11th September 2017, 11:48 am
Ramparts Business Park in Berwick

The impressive figures, which equate to 72.4 per cent of the working-age population with a job, were announced by the Office for National Statistics.

The unemployment rate in the region has also fallen since this time last year.

Locally, the unemployment rate in the Berwick-upon-Tweed constituency is 1.8 per cent of the economically-active population (ages 16-64). This is lower than the UK national average (2.5 per cent).

Minister for Employment Damian Hinds said: “These latest statistics are another reminder that our strong economy is giving record numbers of people the chance to find and stay in work.

“There’s great news in the North East where the number of people in work is at a record high.

“At 72.4 per cent, the employment rate has reached its highest level since comparable records began.

“We’re committed to delivering a welfare system which transforms lives and offers help to those who need it most, whatever their background or wherever they are from.”

Berwick MP Anne-Marie Trevelyan welcomed the figures, which represent the lowest number of people out of work since 1975.

Employment in Berwick has been boosted by the recent Enterprise Zone status for the town’s Ramparts Business Park which has attracted new businesses to establish themselves there.

Mrs Trevelyan said: “I am so pleased that the UK now has such low unemployment rates – it is something I am really proud of, and I am even more pleased that the figures for my own constituency are even lower still.

“With new businesses coming to north Northumberland, and when the dualling of the A1 is complete, we will be an even more attractive place for businesses to locate to and employ local people.

“Continually improving broadband access across north Northumberland is also helping businesses, and those who work from home, to ensure they can grow and thrive even in rural locations.”

Jonathan Walker, head of policy and campaigns, North East England Chamber of Commerce added: “Compared to this time last year, significant numbers of people have found work and moved out of unemployment, which can only be a good thing for our region’s economic health.

“We anticipated this improvement, as many firms tell us that they have been recruiting heavily in recent months and have further plans for expansion. Our most recent economic survey results back this up and suggest that positive trends could continue.”