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NZ’s unemployment rate now on a par with the UK

8 August 2002 Media Statement

Maharey – NZ’s unemployment rate now on a par with the UK and Sweden

Social Services and Employment Minister Steve Maharey has welcomed the reduction in the unemployment rate to 5.1%.

“New Zealand has moved up the OECD rankings and is now 10th equal with Sweden and the UK on unemployment rates. New Zealand was 12th equal with Japan last quarter.

“At 5.1 percent, NZs unemployment rate is well below the OECD average of 6.9 per cent.

“We have now seen employment growth for nine consecutive quarters with a total of 115,000 additional jobs created over the period. This represents a six and a half percent increase in employment over the past two and a quarter years. In this period we have created a city of new jobs.

“What must be emphasised is that this employment growth has been consistent, and is sustainable. Wage pressures remain moderate, and there is now a solid foundation on which to build a sustained period of non-inflationary growth.

“There is however no room for complacency – gaps still exist between regions, and between European, Maori, and Pacific peoples in terms of employment opportunities. Much has been achieved, but much remains to be done,” Steve Maharey said.

ENDS

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