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Volume 975: debated on Wednesday 5 December 1979

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asked the Secretary of State for Employment what is the estimated number of unemployed in Liverpool, Scotland Exchange constituency to the latest date.

Unemployment statistics are available for employment office areas but not for constituencies. For the Liverpool employment office area, of which the Liverpool, Scotland Exchange constituency forms a significant part, the number registered as unemployed at 8 November 1979 was 18,209.

asked the Secretary of State for Employment if he will make a statement on the latest unemployment figures on Merseyside.

On 8 November there were 86,356 people registered as unemployed in the Merseyside special develop- ment area—an unemployment rate of 11·4 per cent.We are very much aware of the serious problems which face areas of high unemployment, including Merseyside, and that is one of the reasons why the Government have recently concentrated help under regional financial assistance schemes in such areas where they will have the greatest impact on unemployment.In the longer term, however, the Government believe that on Merseyside as elsewhere in the country the paramount need is for the creation of a sound and expanding economy in which new real jobs will be created, and Government policies are directed towards this.