Belfast Telegraph

Emigration figures soar by 45%

The number of Irish people emigrating soared by 45% in a year while new figures reveal unemployment increased by 11,000.

Some 40,200 people left Irish shores in the year to April, with the majority emigrating to the UK and locations outside of the US and EU.

The deepening jobs crisis has taken the unemployment rate to 14.3%, with the lack of work opportunities compounded by the rise in long-term unemployment from 5.9% to 7.7% over the year.

It now accounts for more than half the total numbers out of work.

Paul Sweeney, economic adviser for umbrella trade union group Congress, said: "That is a chilling statistic and a chilling commentary on the failure of the austerity programme that was supposedly designed to save us. In fact it is directly responsible for thousands of job losses.

"These figures require an immediate, urgent and strong response from Government."

While emigration among Irish people jumped from 27,700 to 40,200, the number of non-Irish people who left the country dropped for a second year in a row, and accounted for a fifth of the overall 76,400 emigration figure.

Unemployment increased by 10,900 in the year to the end of June, with the total figure for those out of work now at 304,500.

Youth Work Ireland urged the Government to look again at its jobs initiative in light of the emigration figures.

A spokesman said: "There must be a dedicated jobs strategy for young people if we are to avoid the effects of the massive emigration of the 1980s which so decimated communities."

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From Belfast Telegraph