Wales

Unemployment rate falls in Wales

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The latest quarterly unemployment rate in Wales stands at 3.9% - the same as the UK average, according to latest figures from the Office for National Statistics.

But this shows a fall of 0.6% for April to June, compared with January to March - the biggest fall in the UK's nations and regions.

There were 61,000 people out of work in Wales.

The employment rate is 75% in Wales, still less than the UK average.

Change in unemployment rate

Quarterly change from Jan to March 2019

April to June 2019
Source: ONS, August 2019

Altogether, there are more than 1.5 million people in work in Wales.

Economy Minister Ken Skates said: "Despite the ongoing uncertainty caused by the UK government's handling of Brexit and the damaging threat of a no deal, it is encouraging to see that Wales' labour market continues to perform solidly".

Meanwhile, talks between Ineos Automotive and the Welsh Government on the future of the Ford site at Bridgend are "very advanced", according to Mr Skates.

He told BBC Wales Breakfast with Claire Summers he could not disclose any more details but was "excited about the possibility of attracting new automotive manufacturers to Bridgend".

'Good workforce'

Ineos Automotive has been deciding where to build its new 4x4 model over the last few months, with the choice between the Ford site and another in Portugal.

Ford announced at the beginning of June that it would close its Bridgend plant in 2020 with the loss of 1,700 jobs.

Ineos plans to build a vehicle inspired by the Land Rover Defender, which went out of production in 2016.

Aston Martin said it would be building up its workforce at St Athan, Vale of Glamorgan, mainly from the start of next year.

Director of manufacturing Scott Ward said: "There's a good workforce in the area - there's been a high degree of interest in people working for us."

He added: "We have already indicated our intention that St Athan is going to be the home of electrification for Aston Martin, so our future products that are electrified will come from here."

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