THE number of people claiming Job Seekers Allowance (JSA) in the region has dropped.
As of December, there were 2,520 people in Flintshire and 2,976 people in Wrexham claiming the benefit, according to figures released by the Office for National Statistics (ONS).
Since the same time last year, the number of people in Wrexham and Flintshire claiming JSA has dropped by 0.5 per cent in both areas.
The figures are part of a general trend of brighter economic news for the region, with overall figures in Wales showing that the unemployment rate had dropped to 7.2 per cent.
The number of people out of work fell by 12,000 to 108,000 in the three months to November, a fall of 0.9 per cent.
The most recent employment figures from September show that in Flintshire 5.7 per cent of people were unemployed and in Wrexham, 6.6 per cent of people were unemployed.
MP for Wrexham Ian Lucas warned upcoming redundancies could hit the area hard despite the fall.
He said: “Obviously, any fall in the unemployment figures is welcome but there are redundancies in the Wrexham area which have not yet materialised, for example at the Sharp’s factory, Kellogg’s and also First Milk, so there are some significant redundancies in the pipeline.
“There is also a change in the type of jobs that are around. Many are temporary, many are agency work and many are low-paid and this is reflected in the amount of money in peoples’ pockets.
“In our shops and stores there is still not a great deal of money being spent.”
Delyn MP David Hanson was optimistic but cautious about the figures.
He said: “I welcome any fall in unemployment in Flintshire and I hope the trend will continue. However, in my view government needs to do more, with the assembly also, to help increase jobs but just as importantly living standards.
“We need a strong programme of investment in areas such as training, house building and a freeze on energy prices to make a real difference to job creation locally.”
Alyn and Deeside MP Mark Tami said: “I welcome the fall in unemployment although I am concerned about the recent [job] losses that we have heard about in the Wrexham area which will have a knock-on effect in Flintshire.”