The MSP for Falkirk West Michael Matheson has welcomed a record annual drop in youth unemployment in Scotland.

Youth unemployment has fallen by 23,000 over the year from September
to November with the rate decreasing by 4.8 percentage points to 19.9
per cent.

This is a far steeper improvement than the UK wide drop of 1.7 percentage points to 21.0 per cent.

In welcoming these figures Mr Matheson said.

“I welcome these figures which are testament to the Scottish Government’s cast iron commitment to ensuring that our young people having hope for the future is top of the policy agenda.

“I know that having a dedicated Minister for Youth Employment has focused attention on this issue and the work that Angela Constance is doing is starting to bear fruit, although we cannot we complacent.

“The Opportunities for All initiative, guaranteeing all 16-19 year olds an employment or training opportunity will continue combat youth unemployment in Scotland, in spite of the damage caused to the economy by the Westminster system’s austerity agenda.

“With the full powers of an independent nation, we would not be subject to Westminster cuts and could ensure that economic policy better supported our action on youth employment.

“This can only be delivered by a Yes vote for an independent Scotland in 2014.”