UNEMPLOYMENt in Fife continues to fall, according to new figures.
The news has been welcomed by local politicians, councillors and businesses.
The figures, from the Office for National Statistics, have shown the number of people claiming Jobseekers Allowance (JSA) in the Kingdom has decreased for the fourth month in a row.
They reveal that 9604 people now claim JSA in Fife - 220 less than last month and 775 less than last year.
David Torrance, Kirkcaldy SNP MSP, said: “This is very welcome news for the Kirkcaldy constituency. Unemployment is continuing to fall despite the fact that it is such difficult economic times.
“I hope this trend continues because only jobs can lift people out of poverty.
“The creation of local jobs at companies like Amazon, the new Forth road bridge and the expansion at FMC have all had an impact.
“It also means people have more spending power if they are working and this is good news for the High Street.”
Councillor Kay Carrington, executive member for business, enterprise, economy and planning was delighted with the figures, but stressed the need to focus on the future.
She said: “In order to continue to create job opportunities for all those who are still looking for work, Fife Council and the Fife Economy Partnership need to continue to work together, focusing on growing Fife’s economy during these difficult economic times.
“Success stories such as Raytheon wining a £25 million contract securing 300 jobs in Glenrothes and Fife Council investing £5m to provide 600 apprenticeship places for Fife youngsters is a great boost at the end of the year and will promote confidence into the Fife economy for the start of 2013.”
Chris Parr, chairman of the Fife Economy Partnership was equally heartened by the news that the number of people claiming JSA in Fife continues to drop.
He added: “It is great news that Fifers are finding their way back into work and to see a fall in the number of people claiming JSA for the fourth consecutive month is very heartening, doubly so at this time of year when family budgets are under a lot of pressure.”