UNEMPLOYMENT HAS FALLEN BY 10% SINCE 2009
I strongly welcome this week’s news that unemployment figures have fallen to 10%, which is the lowest level since 2009.
Though the long-term unemployment figures are still far too high, this is very encouraging.
Furthermore, we hope that we will be able to cut the unemployment rate down into single figures by the mid-point of the year.
Secondly, the Independent Fiscal Council has given recognition of the growing strength of the economy by commenting on greater flexibility.
Thirdly, the Central Bank here has raised their growth forecasts for 2015.
This is all encouraging, but the Government has a real challenge here both in managing expectations and in making decisions that secure the recovery by avoiding future booms and bust.
That means that we are not going to put at risk the gains that have been made; that we will continue to focus on reducing our deficit while providing further reductions on the income tax burden for low and middle income workers.
Creating jobs is how we will secure the recovery and it remains our number one priority.
So I was very happy to announce a massive investment in Longford this morning which will bring 1,000 permanent jobs to the Ballymahon area.