Jobless in Craigavon figures rise by six percent

THE number of unemployed in the Craigavon area has risen by more than six percent over the past year.

Though there has been no change in the unemployment figures since last month, 183 more people are on the dole than last year.

The number of claimants totals 3,199 of which 2,237 are men and 962 are women.

More than seven percent of working age men are on unemployment benefit and 3.2% women and average of 5.3% of the area’s working population.

The figures show that unemployment has decreased over the past quarter throughout Northern Ireland to 7.9%.

But recent figures for December 2012 show that the number of unemployment benefit claimants increased by 500 from the previous month’s revised figure.

Enterprise Minister Arlene Foster said: “Whilst the official measure of unemployment in Northern Ireland decreased over the quarter, it is disappointing that the number of people on the claimant count has continued to increase. The rate of unemployment in Northern Ireland (7.9%) was similar to that in the UK (7.8%), and still compares favourably to the rates in the European Union (10.7%) and the Republic of Ireland (14.7%).”