Wide Bay's jobless level stuck in double digits

NEW statistics have revealed a decline in the Wide Bay region's unemployment rates.

A spokesperson for the Australian Bureau of Statistics said the region's jobless level dropped to an 11.4 per cent unemployment rate in July, a slight decline from June's 12.9 per cent.

Member for Hinkler Keith Pitt said he had been actively working on programs to create new jobs in the region.

"The unemployment rate in Hinkler has been unacceptably high for many years and I will continue to fight for job creation opportunities throughout the electorate," Mr Pitt said.

He said he'd successfully secured multiple Coalition Government job creation programs.

"This includes the Wide Bay-Burnett Regional Jobs Investment Package which has five projects in Hinkler worth $30.8 million, resulting in 99 construction jobs and 333 ongoing positions and the Building Better Regions Fund which has invested $16.3 million in Round 1 and an additional $10 million in Round 2 to invest in projects that create jobs locally," he said.

Small business struggles have been a prominent concern in recent weeks.

The NewsMail has spoken to a number of business owners in the CBD regarding constraints and the inability to hire more staff.

Mr Pitt said as a previous small business owner himself, he understood how vital small businesses were.

"That is why the Coalition Government has worked so hard to improve the bottom line for small business operators by dropping the company tax rate to 27.5% this financial year," he said.

The spokesperson said the unemployment rate for persons aged 15-24 was at 23.9 per cent in July, a statistic that Mr Pitt said he would work on lowering through the promotion of apprenticeships and traineeships.

"The Federal Government is offering young people Transition to Work and Employment First Aid programs, the Youth PaTH program is seeing solid growth in the numbers of young people being placed into work."



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