NI gains 7,000 new jobs despite 'difficult year'

The regional Labour Market Statistics for the last quarter of 2002 released this morning have indicated that there has been an increase of some 7,000 jobs over the year, with a particularly strong performance in the service sector.

According to NIO Finance Minister Ian Pearson, the year-on-year increases in total jobs were lower than the peak figures of several years ago, however this was still "encouraging evidence of sustained performance despite difficult economic conditions”.

The Quarterly Employment Survey revealed that the seasonally adjusted employee jobs total in Northern Ireland at December 2002 was 660,970 – up 7,090 over the year. This included an increase in the service sector (up 12,060), whereas there were falls in manufacturing (down 3,910), construction (down 660) and in other Industries (down 400).

The survey also showed that compared to the previous quarter the number of employee jobs increased by 1,700. The main increase was in the service sector (3,140) whereas there were decreases in manufacturing (down 1,260) and construction (down 210).

Mr Pearson said: “However, we are not immune from the effects of the current global uncertainty and the recent announcement of redundancies, in particular losses at Bombardier Shorts, has shown that certain sectors are more exposed than others to falling international demand."

Overall, the manufacturing sector has shown a 4% decrease in the number of jobs compared to last year. The Minister said that manufacturing was a "vital sector in the Northern Ireland economy and we must look to improving the saleability of our expertise in this area”.

The most recent unemployment figures (November 2002 – January 2003) were also released indicating that at 5.5%, the unemployment rate for this quarter is down by 0.6 percentage points from the equivalent figure a year ago and 0.5 percentage points lower since last quarter. As it stands, the Northern Ireland statistics are lower than four other UK regions London (6.6%), North East (6.5%), Scotland (5.7%) and the West Midlands (5.6%).

“The highest ever employee jobs figure is complemented by a Northern Ireland unemployment rate which is amongst the lowest on record," the Minister added.

"With an unemployment rate of 5.5% we are beginning to see evidence of increased labour market participation, which is to be welcomed."

Overall 16,000 of the unemployed have been out of work for one year or more and this is 1,000 lower than the number recorded for the same group last year. Recent figures indicate that, the total long-term unemployed over the past five years has decreased by just over 40%.


Related Northern Ireland Recruitment News Stories
Click here for the latest headlines.

14 January 2004
NI unemployment figures increase
The number of people unemployed in Northern Ireland is on the increase according to the latest figures. Labour force statistics released on Wednesday revealed that some 46,000 people are unemployed, a rise of 3,000 on the this time last year.
12 December 2007
NI Employment Levels Hit Record High
Christmas may be the time to be merry, but it looks like there is reason to celebrate well in to 2008 as figures just released have shown that Northern Ireland has the highest number of jobs on record – with many more people working in both the building and construction world, as well as in the service sector.
08 October 2014
50 New Jobs Announced At Citrix
Labour TD Joe Costello has welcomed the announcement by Citrix of 50 new jobs at its East Point facilities in Dublin. Citrix, which offers mobile workspace technologies, will see the number of people it employs in Ireland grow to 265 people by the end of 2014.
05 May 2009
Jobs Boost At Maynooth
More than 150 jobs are set to be created in Co Kildare during the construction of a new research building at NUI Maynooth. Around €15m is being invested in the state-of-the-art facility. The construction posts will be rolled out over the next year.
06 May 2016
Unemployment 'Continues To Fall' - Nash
New figures that show an 8.4% fall in unemployment figures have been welcomed by the Minister for Business and Employment Ged Nash. The latest figures from the Central Statistics Office show that the unemployment rate for April 2016 was 8.4%. This is down significantly from the same period last year, when the jobless rate stood at 9.7%.