Employment falls in the public sector

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Finance Secretary John Swinney said Scotland had a falling unemployment rate, despite losses in the public sector

PUBLIC sector employment in Scotland fell by 25,200 in the year to the second quarter of 2011, according to new official statistics.

Over the same period, 57,700 more people were employed in the private sector in Scotland.

Excluding the impact of public sector employment in the financial institutions, the public sector now accounts for 22.6 per cent of total employment in Scotland, while private sector employment now accounts for 77.4 per cent of Scottish employment, which is the highest share since devolution.  In the second quarter of 1999, the directly comparable figure was 76.2 per cent.

In the second quarter of 1999, total employment in Scotland was 2.284 million.  In the second quarter of 2011, total employment is 2.486 million.

Other findings from the Public Sector Employment in Scotland for the second quarter of 2011 are that total employment in the devolved public sector decreased from 515,700 in Q2 2010 to 496,100 in Q2 2011, a decrease of 19,700, or 3.8 per cent, over the year. This was driven mainly by a decrease in local government employment, which decreased by 12,400, or 4.1 per cent, over the year

JOHN SWINNEY COMMENTED ON THE FIGURES

Finance Secretary John Swinney said: “Today’s figures show that the number of new jobs created in the private sector in Scotland is more than double the number lost in the public sector, in the year to the second quarter of 2011.  Excluding the impact of financial sector jobs temporarily in the public sector, we now have the highest share of private sector employment in Scotland since devolution.

“As a government, in the teeth of spending cuts from Westminster, we are prioritising investment in frontline public services, including delivering over 1,000 additional police officers since we came to office, while the number of NHS staff has risen by 3,500 since the second quarter of 2007.

“Today’s labour market statistics show total employment rising in Scotland by 23,000 in the three months to July – compared to a fall of 69,000 across the UK – with falling unemployment in Scotland as it rises above the 2.5 million mark in the UK as a whole.

“Scotland continues to have higher employment, lower unemployment and lower economic inactivity rates than the UK.

“We are accelerating our programme to reform public services, improve performance and focus on the outcomes that matter to people. The Spending Review to be published next week will build on our track record of public sector reform and efficiency, and will see an even greater shift towards collaboration across the public sector.

“Our policy of no compulsory redundancies for staff under the Scottish Government’s responsibility is helping maintain frontline staffing levels and supporting economic security as a driver of recovery.”

 

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