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Government Welcomes Increase In Employment

Maharey: New Zealanders Are Coming Home – Government Welcomes Increase In Employment

Social Services and Employment Minister Steve Maharey has welcomed the fact that employment continued to grow in the December quarter of last year.

“Employment increased by 16,000 over the quarter, and 41,000 over the year.

“What is notable about the HLFS results is that they show significant growth in labour supply. Over the quarter the working age population increased by 14,400, an increase which is largely attributable to a net gain in permanent and long-term migration.

“In short, New Zealanders are coming home, but employment growth, while good, has not kept up. The result is an increase in the unemployment rate to 5.4%.

“I am particularly pleased to see that there has been a statistically significant increase in employment in the 15-19 year age group, and that, over the year the number of long term unemployed dropped by 5,600.

“The new Zealand economy has weathered the international economic slow-down particularly well. Our unemployment rate, while up on the last quarter, is well below the OECD average of 6.9 per cent, and compares favourably with the US (5.6) and the Australian rate (6.7).

“The challenge is to ensure that the economic growth provides the job opportunities for a growing labour market,” Steve Maharey said.

Ends

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