Labour market statistics 2020

Jamie Hepburn, Minister for Business, Fair Work and Skills

COMMENTING on the latest official labour market statistics, published by ONS today, Minister for Business, Fair Work and Skills Jamie Hepburn said:

“For the period June to August 2020, Scotland’s employment rate estimate rose over the quarter to 73.9% and the unemployment rate estimate stayed the same over the quarter at 4.5%

“HMRC early estimates for September 2020 for Scotland, published for the first time this morning, show that there were 2,329,000 payrolled employees, decreasing by 2.7% compared with September 2019.

“These figures still do not reflect the full impact of coronavirus (COVID-19) on employment as the Job Retention Scheme will have offered relief to many employers and employees.

“I know this is a very worrying time for many people, particularly those working in sectors most affected by the pandemic. Last week the Scottish Government launched the £25 million National Transition Training Fund to help up to 10,000 people aged 25 and over, who have lost their jobs or are at risk of redundancy as a result of the virus, to develop the skills required to move into sectors with the greatest potential for future growth and job opportunities.

“To give young people the chance to succeed, we will ensure everyone aged between 16 and 24 has the opportunity of work, education or training through Scotland’s Young Person’s Guarantee.

“We have also launched a £40 million fund to help businesses affected by temporary restrictions to slow the spread of the virus, which will help to protect jobs over the coming fortnight. “We are doing everything we can with the limited powers available to us to support people through this crisis – but it is essential that the UK Government also plays its part. We have repeatedly called on the UK Government to extend the furlough scheme, and stop avoidable job losses. It is clear that the new Job Support Scheme is far less generous than the furlough scheme and does not go far enough.”

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