Labour’s First Minister has been caught using dodgy statistics to back up his claim that youth unemployment in Wales is the lowest of all UK nations, when the most authoritative data from the International Labour Organisation shows it’s the highest.
The First Minister made the claim last night using tentative data, which carries a health warning that it is based on a ‘relatively small sample size’, is ‘experimental’ and which ’should be used with caution’.
Figures published by the Office for National Statistics show Wales has the highest International Labour Organisation unemployment rate for 16-24 year olds of all the UK nations, currently standing at 22.5%. This has been the case continuously for the past five years.
William Graham AM, Shadow Minister for Business, said, "Once again Carwyn Jones has been caught red-handed using dodgy statistics to try to defend Labour’s appalling record of failure.
"Wales has had the UK’s highest youth unemployment figures since Carwyn Jones became First Minister five years ago.
"Instead of acting to help create the conditions for new job opportunities, Labour Ministers are busy playing politics with unreliable statistics.
"Labour Ministers should be chomping at the bit to secure the conditions for private sector growth to encourage a new generation of entrepreneurs.
"More young people in Wales than anywhere else in the UK are missing out on opportunities to get a step on the career ladder and secure valuable skills and qualifications to help them compete in the global race.
"Carwyn Jones should stand up and defend the poor record of 15 years of Labour government in Wales instead of manipulating statistics to aid the narrow party political interests of the Labour Party.
"This is another issue where Ed Miliband should get hold of the First Minister and tell him to start working for the best interests of Wales."