NEW figures have revealed how York shrugged off the recession last year, with 80 more businesses being launched than were closed down.
At the same time, the number of Civil Service jobs increased by 110 to 2,970 – almost double the number there were in 1997.
The statistics have been obtained by York MP Hugh Bayley, who said: “York has survived the recession better than any other city in the north of England.
“It is a lively place, full of enterprises who shrugged off the gloomy economic predictions and got on with business.
“York has a lot of natural advantages – good schools and colleges, a skilled workforce and a beautiful environment, which will help us bounce back from the recession more quickly than other places.”
The figures come after the latest unemployment figures showed an increase in the number of people claiming Job Seekers Allowance in York in the last couple of months, albeit smaller rises than for the same period in 2009.
Mr Bayley was given the business and Civil Service figures by Stephen Penneck, the Director General of the Office of National Statistics.
“There were 80 more businesses enterprises in York in 2009 than one year before,” said Mr Bayley. “Over the decade from 2000 to 2009, the number of enterprises in York rose by 1,175 from 4,645 to 5,820.
“The number of civil servants in York increased by 110 in 2009. Between 1997, when Labour came to power, and 2009 the number of Civil Service jobs in York rose by 1,410 – almost doubling from 1,560 to 2,970 in total.”
The MP said that in a recession, public service jobs helped the economy to pull through because they were more secure than private employment, and civil servants’ spending power helped to create jobs in the private sector.
“I have fought hard to attract more Government jobs to York – such as the Defra jobs at Kings Pool and the Defence Vetting Agency. We have doubled the number of civil service posts in York since 1999,” he said.