Unemployment falls as EU gets back to work

The
number of people in work has increased by 1.5 million and adult and youth
long-term unemployment has fallen by more than three-quarters since 1997,
according to Government figures.

Over
the same period the percentage of 15-64 years old who are economically active
in the UK has also risen to around 75 per cent. This is the third highest
recorded participation level in the EU behind Denmark and Sweden.

The
figures, released in the DTI report Full and Fulfilling Employment: The Labour
Market of the Future, reveal that male participation rates in the EU are above
70 per cent in all member states, and close to US levels in most cases.

Female
participation rates are lower and vary much more across the EU – for instance,
while the gap between men and women is just 9 per cent in Denmark, in Italy it
is 27 per cent.

The
average proportion of 15-64 year olds working in 2000 was 69 per cent,
according to the report.

The
figures show that nearly a third of the population is unable or unwilling to
work – in absolute terms, 50 million women and 27 million men.  www.dti.gov.uk/er/ermer

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