Dáil Éireann - Volume 598 - 24 February, 2005

Written Answers. - Job Losses.

  126. Mr. Durkan asked the Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment the net number of jobs lost or created in each of the past 12 months; the locations to which jobs have been lost; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [6459/05]

  Mr. Martin:Job creation and job losses are a feature of economic development in all countries as various sectors expand and contract in response to market demand for goods and services, competitive forces, restructuring and technological change. Despite the slowdown in the global economy the Irish labour market has been very resilient with employment continuing to grow and unemployment remaining stable.

Statistics on job creation and job losses are obtained from the Central Statistics Office quarterly national household survey. According to the latest available survey for the third quarter of 2004, 1,893,600 persons were in employment in the third quarter of 2004, an increase of 57,200 or 3.1% in the year. This is the highest level of annual growth recorded since the 3.8% recorded in the first quarter of 2001. Quarter on quarter, there was a seasonal increase of over 57,000 persons in employment. When seasonal factors are taken into account employment showed an increase of 13,200 in the quarter.

There were 93,900 persons unemployed in the third quarter, representing a decrease of 4,900 in the year. The seasonally adjusted unemployment figure stood at 86,600, representing a decrease of 1,500 in the quarter. The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was 4.4%.

While job losses have been experienced in some sectors, the above statistics indicate that they are being offset by employment opportunities in others. Detailed figures for 2004 for job gains and losses in client-supported companies of the industrial development agencies will not be available until mid 2005 when the annual Forfás employment survey is published.