Pacific employment at all-time high

Pacific Peoples Minister Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga has welcomed new figures which show the unemployment rate for Pacific people has fallen to its lowest point since 2008 and employment at its highest level.

The figures for the December 2015 quarter, released by Statistics New Zealand today, show the unemployment rate for Pacific people dropped over 2015 to 9.7 per cent, from 11.4 per cent a year earlier.

This is the lowest rate since December 2008, when the figure was 7.7 per cent.

The number of Pacific people in employment also increased over 2015 by 14,500 to 130,700. This is a 12.5 per cent increase and represents the highest number of Pacific people employed.

“This is pleasing news for our Pacific people. More Pacific people in employment is good for them, their families and their communities,” Lotu-Iiga says.

“Our government has increased resources for Pacific education, starting from early childhood education through to trades and training for young people. This is beginning to show positive results.

“Our Pacific communities have much to contribute to the New Zealand economy and I am pleased that this contribution is increasing. One of our government’s priorities is building a strong economy. A strong economy means more business and more jobs. Pacific people will benefit even further from this continued focus,” he said.