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Latest Black Country economic trends

Thousands of jobs have been created, worklessness has decreased and educational attainment has improved in the Black Country, according to a new report from the Black Country Consortium.

Additional 3,000 jobs created, bringing the total up to 432,300
Residents classed as workless down by 5.3%
Pupils achieving 5+A*- C GCSEs (including Maths and English) increases to 58.2%

The Black Country Consortium Economic Intelligence Unit’s 2014 Economic Review will be presented to 160 business delegates and public sector policy makers on Thursday 27 February at the Copthorne Hotel, Merry Hill.

The report, now in its eleventh year, provides intelligence to inform, support and influence evidence based decision-making for the Black Country LEP and public sector partners.


The report sets out performance against 2033 based targets. Highlights include:

An additional 3,000 jobs created, bringing the total up to 432,300, with the largest growth in transport technologies.
5.3% (6,250) fall in workless working age adults between 2012 and 2013 compared to a 1.2% increase in the previous year.
Pupils achieving 5+ A*- C GCSE grades (including English and Maths) increased to 58.2% in 2013, up from 56.7% in 2012 and 37% in 2006.
The amount of High Quality Employment Land increased in the last year by 39.4 hectares, rising to 634 hectares across the Black Country.
2,296 new homes were built in 2013, meaning the Black Country is on target to achieve its 2033 target.
The Black Country is getting closer to achieving its carbon emissions target; emissions fell by 0.4 in the last year compared to a 0.3 increase in England.

Councillor David Sparks, Leader of Dudley Council said, "The Black Country Economic Review provides an overview of the Black Country’s performance during the year. It enables us to understand if we are making progress towards a prosperous and successful Black Country.”

Black Country LEP Chair, Stewart Towe, said, "The review demonstrates we are serious about applying economic intelligence to ensure the LEP tackles the barriers to business growth. We have unique strengths in advanced manufacturing and are working to globalise supply chains to increase exports for products that are made in the Black Country and sold around the world.”


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