The labour market statistics show strong growth in North East employment, yet the region still lags behind the national averages with the lowest employment rate of the English regions.
However, the North East no longer has the highest rate of unemployment nationally, with the decrease over the previous quarter moving the region ahead of Yorkshire and the Humber.
Arlen Pettitt, knowledge development manager at the North East England Chamber of Commerce, said:
“Overall, these figures are good news for the region, with both employment and unemployment moving in the right direction. But as the UK as a whole hits unemployment lows not seen since the 1970s, the North East still has work to do to narrow the gap. It’s also worth noting that these figures only cover the period to January 2019 and it could be we are yet to feel the worst of the Brexit uncertainty, as Chamber members have told us of delayed investment decisions while they wait for a clear outcome.”
Jacqueline Gallazzi-Ritchie, Director, All England Gas Services based in Stockton provides Boiler Cover, boiler responsive repairs and maintenance and boilers on finance to customers throughout the country. She started the business 10 years ago in March 2009 with just herself and her husband Paul Ritchie. The business now employs 10 people and uses varying numbers of sub-contractors.
She said: “These employment figures reflect our own experience. Our business is doing well with new contracts on-line and throughout the country with increased levels of work for housing associations. As a result of this we are planning to recruit two middle-managers to support our growth plans which will allow Paul and I to focus more on our business strategy. This potential for expansion is built on our firm commitment to great customer service.”