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Last Updated: Wednesday, 14 May, 2003, 09:51 GMT 10:51 UK
Unemployment continues to fall
Job Centre
The number out of work fell in Scotland

Unemployment has fallen in Scotland and in the UK as a whole, according to the latest figures.

The government's preferred measure shows a drop of 7,000 in the number of jobless north of the border, in the three months to March.

The International Labour Organisation (ILO) figures show unemployment in Scotland at 150,000.

The figure is broadly in line with the UK picture, where the number of people out of work is now below 1.5m.

Claimant count

The unemployment rate measured by the ILO standard stands at 5.9% in Scotland.

Claimant count unemployment fell by 300 in April to 98,800, the lowest level since 1975.

The number of people in employment has risen, by 13,000, to 2,390,000.

Scottish Secretary Helen Liddell said the figures were "very encouraging".

She said: "Behind these statistics lie stories of considerable achievement for individuals and communities.

'Low growth'

"Sound management of the economy continues to reap benefits and we will work hard to move further towards full employment."

Adam Ingram, Scottish National Party deputy economy and enterprise spokesman, gave the figures a guarded welcome.

He said: "This is good news as far as it goes. "However the government must not become complacent as Scotland's economy has gone from low growth to no growth.

"The coalition parties must now make good on their pledge to tackle this serious and long-term problem."




SEE ALSO:
Jobless figure continues to fall
16 Apr 03  |  Scotland
Jobless figure 'at record low'
19 Mar 03  |  Scotland
Unemployment reduction continues
15 Jan 03  |  Scotland
Scots jobless figure falls
18 Dec 02  |  Scotland


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