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Unemployment Falls To 12-Year Low

At least 10,000 New Zealanders have jobs who wouldn't have under the economic policies of the previous government, Economic Development Minister Jim Anderton says.

New official figures released today show unemployment has dropped to its lowest level in twelve years. The 5.9% level of unemployment compares with a rate of 6.4% promised by the previous government in its Pre-Election Economic and Fiscal Update.

"The difference between the forecast of the Shipley-English Government, and the result achieved by the Labour-Alliance Coalition, is that there are more than ten thousand additional jobs.

"In a decade in office, the National party never brought the level of unemployment this low. Not only that, but before the last election they were still promising to keep unemployment higher than it is under the Labour-Alliance Coalition," Jim Anderton said.

Statistics NZ figures show there are 16,000 fewer unemployed than a year ago. The number in jobs is up by 37,000 compared to last year. The number in full-time work is up by 32,000.

Jim Anderton says there will be no relenting in the Labour-Alliance Coalition's efforts to create more high-skill, high-value jobs.

"There are still serious challenges facing the economy which the Government has to address. No one in the Government will be satisfied yet. There is still essential work to be completed to create more jobs and rising incomes for all New Zealanders, particularly in the regions.

"Today's figures suggest the policies of the Labour-Alliance Coalition are on the right track. The last time unemployment was this low I was still in the Labour Party," Jim Anderton said.

Ends

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