MK is still place to be for business and jobs

editorial image
Have your say

Business is still booming in Milton Keynes and the city’s unemployment figures are still falling going into 2014.

Almost 400 new business units have opened up in the city over the last year, while the number of people out of work has fallen for the fourth month in a row, from 2.6 per cent in October to 2.3 per cent last month.

At the same time last year the unemployment rate stood at 3.4 per cent.

The latest Annual Business Register and Employment Survey shows that between 2009 and 2012, the number of people working – full and part-time – in Milton Keynes, rose from 137,240 to 144,316. That represents a significant 5.2 per cent increase in jobs.

The number of people out of work in Milton Keynes fell to 2.3 per cent in November, or 3,853 people, from 2.6 per cent in October. This compares to a rate of 3.4 per cent, or 5,470 people, in November 2012.

The ‘jobs to home’ ratio stood at 1.38, which shows the council is well on its way to reaching its key target of 1.5.

The number of business units in MK increased from 11,150 units in 2012 to 11,530 in 2013, representing a growth of 3.4 per cent. This indicates both the strongest business presence in the South East Midlands Local Enterprise Partnership (SEMLEP) and in the South East England region as a whole.

Councillor David Hopkins, Cabinet Member responsible for Economic Growth, said: “We have so much to shout about in Milton Keynes, with unemployment falling, more new jobs being created and many new opportunities for our borough.”

Mr Hopkins added that the decrease in unemployment is particularly impressive in light of the city’s sturdy annual population growth.

“We have got more people living here each year, but also more jobs being created,” he said.

“We have previously been praised as the best place to do business in the UK, and these new figures back that up.”

His optimism is shared by Milton Keynes North MP, Mark Lancaster, who said: “This is very welcoming and positive news. I’m delighted with the consistent decline in the unemployment figures.

“We cannot be complacent though. More needs to be done and with the strong economic growth we are certainly on the right path.”