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Government Releases Employment Strategy Document

Social Services and Employment Minister Steve Maharey today released the Government's employment document – Opportunity, Capacity, Participation: Government Employment Strategy 2000.

The release of the publication follows the announcement last week of an official unemployment rate of 5.9% - the lowest in twelve years. A new monitoring regime to assess performance against the strategy at two levels has been agreed by the Cabinet:
 the employment outcomes being achieved will be reported by 30 September each year at the beginning of the budget round, and
 progress on and results emerging from Government actions and initiatives to influence those outcomes will be reported as at 31 December and 30 June each year.

The new monitoring regime is designed to give greater prominence to employment strategy issues that come before Cabinet. In future major policy proposals that impact on the employment strategy will include a clear assessment for Cabinet of their expected impact on progress with the strategy.

"While the Government welcomed unemployment numbers dropping to a 12-year low last week, we know that they give us no room for complacency. Historically good performance is not good enough – there are still far too many New Zealanders who want to be in work but aren't able to get jobs.

"The Government has put job-rich growth back at the centre of public policy – growing an inclusive, innovative economy for the benefit of all is amongst our key goals. The Employment Strategy document sets out the framework within which the Government will seek to grow jobs.

"The strategy is about all the macro and micro-economic policies which impact on employment. The employment impact of new policy decisions and programme implementation is now explicitly part of this Government's policy decision making process," Steve Maharey said.

Ends

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