August Live Register – Minister Ó Cuív TD

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Government will continue to prioritise the creation of new jobs and work opportunities in the coming months

Éamon Ó Cuív TD, Minister for Social Protection has said that while the "rate of increase in the Live Register has moderated in August the level of unemployment is still a matter of huge concern," for the Government.

"The Government will continue to prioritise the creation of new jobs and work opportunities in the coming months," he said.

Minister Ó Cuív said: "Today 1st September, the Community Services Programme and the Rural Social Scheme move across to my Department from the Department of Community, Equality and Gaeltacht Affairs. They will be developed further to give more opportunities to people who are out of work and who want to maintain their skills or improve their job prospects. I will be expanding the schemes to create further work opportunities in the social economy. Further details of the operation and expansion of and amendments to the schemes, will be available in due course."

Minister Ó Cuív was commenting on the August (seasonally adjusted) Live Register figure published today by the CSO of 455,000 which is a 0.6% increase on the seasonally adjusted figure from July 2010.

The month-on-month increase of 99 in the headline or unadjusted figure is smaller when compared with the month-on-month increase in August 2009 (4,304) and in August 2008 (9,144).

Minister Ó Cuív said that: "Growth in competitive employment is dependent on economic growth driven by fiscal and banking stability. It is now projected that there will be economic growth in 2010 with improved economic growth in 2011.

"Across Government we are providing income supports for vulnerable people, more education and training places for those who need to re-skill and supporting innovation and diversification in areas ranging from technology to food production.

"The specific measures we are taking include:

  • The Government's €40 billion Capital Investment Plan launched by An Taoiseach in July, described as proportionately, one of the highest spends in the European Union, and a major stimulus to the economy as we return to growth.
  • The €500 million Innovation Fund-Ireland, launched in the USA by the Taoiseach in July which will support enterprise development and job creation by drawing top venture capitalists to Ireland.
  • Over the next five years, €360 million will be invested in Ireland's research and innovation, involving the nation's third-level institutions, that will create jobs and new enterprises and drive Ireland's economic recovery.
  • Under the Employment Subsidy Scheme, we are investing over €130 million to help more than 1,600 firms to keep 80,000 workers in jobs.
  • The Enterprise Stabilisation Fund supported over 7,500 jobs last year.
  • The Graduates 4 International Growth (G4IG) initiative developed and delivered by Enterprise Ireland in partnership with UCD Michael Smurfit Graduate Business School.
  • An extra €55 million investment announced in August to give early-stage entrepreneurs capital to get their businesses off the ground.
  • €169 million is being provided by Government for the Back to Education Allowance Scheme (BTEA) for the 2010/11 academic year. There were 20,808 people in receipt of the allowance for the 2009/2010 academic year. Some practical changes to ease its qualifying conditions came in to effect from Monday 19 July 2010.
  • An additional €12 million provided for the Labour Market Activation Fund announced in August. The additional funding will support education and training programmes for at least 5,000 additional unemployed people and will bring the total number of participant places supported by the Fund to over 11,000 this year.

"This increase in the Live Register during the summer will be reversed this autumn. It is worth noting that within the register are almost 64,000 people who are employed either casually or part time. We want to improve our economy to help as many of those people as possible get back to a 5-day week and off the register.

"We are concerned to protect others from a drift into long-term unemployment which is one reason why the PRSI job incentive scheme for employers is focused on creating new jobs for people who have been on the Live Register for 6 months or more," concluded Minister Ó Cuív.

Department of Social Protection
1st September 2010

Last modified:01/09/2010