• Kenneth Gibson MSP

More People in Scotland Employed now than pre-COVID


Early estimates from HM Revenue & Customs show that in December 2021 there were 2.42 million employees in Scotland, which is around 22,000 more than in February 2020.


The latest Office for National Statistics (ONS) figures show that 2.67 million people aged 16 and over were in work in the period September to November 2021– an increase of 30,000 on the previous three months.


A total of 100,000 Scots were unemployed in September to November, according to the ONS - a decrease of 21,000 from the previous quarter.


Employment Minister Richard Lochhead MSP said:


“For September to November 2021, Scotland’s estimated employment rate rose over the quarter to 75.1% while the estimated unemployment rate fell to 3.6%.”


The minister continued:


“We are all too aware of the continuing impact and economic uncertainty that COVID is having and that is why we are doing all we can to limit the spread of the virus and mitigate the effects it has on our economy.


“The 2022/23 Scottish Budget invests an additional £68.3 million in employability and training to help businesses address skills shortages and create high quality, sustainable jobs.


“To accelerate the potential of digital technology, £192 million is allocated to improve connectivity and boost the digital economy, including specific support for small and medium-sized businesses.”


Kenneth Gibson MSP commented:


“While employment figures can be volatile it is heartening to see the trend of such an increase in employment levels to above pre-pandemic levels so soon.


“It is also great to see a record 73.1% employment rate amongst women, quite possibly spurred on by the ability to work from home and hybrid working.


“All in all, these figures reveal plenty of reason to be cautiously optimistic.”


ENDS