The latest figures released by the Central Statistics Office have revealed that Loughrea has recorded the biggest year-on-year drop in unemployment in County Galway.
The figures show that Loughrea’s unemployment figure has fallen by 15 per cent or 331 people on last year, meaning there are now 1,865 on the Live Register in the area. However, there has been a month-on-month increase in unemployment of 1.3 per cent.
In terms of the county, Loughrea is closely followed by Tuam, which recorded a fall of 14.7 per cent (459 people ) on last year’s figure. There was a 13.7 per cent drop in the figure for Gort, while unemployment in Ballinasloe is down 12.5 per cent.
The figures for Galway City show that there were 9,220 on the Live Register in June, down 11.5 per cent from the 10,414 recorded 12 months earlier. However, there was again a month-on-month increase of 4.22 per cent or 373 people.
In comparison, the number of people on the register in Dublin was down 11.6 per cent to 86,185; Limerick City has fallen by 11.3 per cent to 11,019; Cork City is down 9.9 per cent to 14,882, and Waterford City was down 9.5 per cent to 9,935.
There were 17,849 on the Live Register in the city and county combined in June of this year. The figure is down 12.7 per cent from the 20,445 who were on the Live Register in June of last year. However, it is still up 500 people on the previous month.
The figures also show Galway is performing better than the State averages, where the average year-on-year drop was 10.6 per cent, and the month-on-month increase was 3.1 per cent.
There is some cause for cautious celebration with the release of these new figures. County wide unemployment figures are now down by around 30 per cent since reaching their peak five years ago at the height of the economic recession.
Ireland continues to have the highest expenditure rate on unemployment in the EU, according to Eurostat. Eurostat said government spending on unemployment was highest in Ireland at 7.6 per cent of total expenditure in 2014, with the EU average standing at 3.2 per cent. The next highest proportion was in Spain at 6.7 per cent, followed by Denmark at 5.9 per cent, and Belgium, Germany, and the Netherlands at 4.3 per cent.