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Wednesday 29th May 2024, 2:00 PM (BST)

Entrepreneurs drive job growth in North East

Entrepreneurship is the driving force behind job growth in the North East, with the number of jobs rising by 1.7 per cent in the last year, according to the NatWest Regional Economic Tracker.

There are now 2.1 per cent more jobs in the region than there were during the financial crisis in 2008. Self-employment has also risen since 2008, with a growth of 16 per cent.


The tracker looked at employment levels in 11 regions across the UK and found that self-employment levels were highest in Gateshead at 11.3 per cent. This was followed by Newcastle at 10.7 per cent and Middlesbrough at 9.6 per cent.

There has been a 21.1 per cent increase in the number of self-employed people since 2008, with self-employed workers now making up 14.7 per cent of all jobs.

Women were found to be the driving force for self-employment growth in the UK, with the number of self-employed females increasing by 40 per cent since 2008. This accounts for 54 per cent of the increase in self-employed workers.


Commenting on the findings, NatWest Senior Economist, Sebastian Burnside, said that “entrepreneurs are making a fantastically important contribution to the UK’s labour market.”

According to Burnside, there are now 4.6 million self-employed workers in the UK, an increase of 800,000 since 2008, with women accounting for over 430,000 of self-employed jobs.

“Over the course of the recovery, we have seen the pace of self-employment growth vary. At the beginning in 2009 and 2010, self-employment was growing rapidly even as firms were shedding jobs,” he said.

“However, with employers once again recruiting workers and unemployment levels now below 5 per cent, we are starting to see the growth of employee jobs outstrip self-employment’s expansion.”

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