Record numbers of job vacancies show growth in the economy and reinforce the need for an increase in the Island’s working population, says Chief Minister Allan Bell MHK.
Vacancies reached the highest level ever reported in September this year with over 900 notified to the Job Centre. Of these more than 500 remained on file at the end of the month, the highest month-end total since 2008.
Mr Bell said the level of vacancies reflected a strong demand from employers in the local economy. With so many jobs available significant numbers of people had left the unemployment register – nearly 2,500 over the past year – but there were still shortages in certain sectors.
‘The record level of job vacancies is an encouraging indicator in a number of respects, apart from providing further evidence of energy and activity in our economy.
‘A situation of strong relative demand for labour has got to be good news for local workers and local wages, as employers should be incentivised to offer decent terms and conditions in order to attract staff.’
The Chief Minister continued:
‘The current environment of high job vacancies is also a favourable backdrop for this Government’s policy of supporting people to move off benefits and into employment, which is much better for the individuals concerned as well as for the economy, society and our public finances.’
‘Finally, these statistics are a reminder of the pressing need to grow the Island’s working population, not just to meet current demand for labour but to secure a level of economic momentum strong enough to sustain jobs and public services into the future.’