NEW figures have revealed vastly differing levels of employment across Scotland.
The latest Annual Population Survey (APS), which was produced by the Office of National Statistics (ONS), covered the year from 1 July 2014 to 30 June 2015.
The survey revealed the council area with the highest employment rate in Scotland were the Orkney Islands which boasts a 86.3 per cent employment for those aged 16-64.
Following closely behind Orkney were Aberdeenshire (81 per cent) and Shetland Islands (80.9 per cent), both areas which benefit from surrounding energy industries.
Conversely, Dundee City (63.9 per cent), Glasgow City (64.3 per cent) and North Ayrshire (65.8 per cent) registered the lowest levels of employment in Scotland.
The UK and Scotland both had an annual employment rate of 72.9 per cent. This means the employment rate for Scotland is now 0.1 percentage point higher than in the equivalent period at the start of the 2008 recession (July 2008-June 2009), when it was 72.8 per cent while the UK employment rate is now 1.6 percentage points higher.
The government’s long term plan has laid the foundations for a stronger economyDavid Mundell, Secreatry of State for Scotland
Despite the slight increase in Scotland’s national employment level, over half (53 per cent) of local authorities in Scotland have lower employment rates than at the start of the recession, while the rest showed an increase.
The lacklustre annual employment figures were accompanied by no change in recent unemployment rates from May to July (2015). During the period unemployment in Scotland remained unchanged at 164,000 while the number out of work in the UK increase by 10,000 to 1.82 million.
Figures from the Office of National Statistics (ONS) released in September this year showed Scotland’s annual unemployment rate of 5.9 per cent was above the UK’s rate of 5.5 per cent. Secretary of State for Scotland David Mundell, commenting on the latest figures, said: “The government’s long term plan has laid the foundations for a stronger economy.
“It is almost exactly a year since Scotland made the historic decision to remain part of the UK. In those 12 months we have seen further improvements in the Scottish Labour market with employment increasing and unemployment falling.”