WALES has among the lowest rates of unemployment in the United Kingdom, according to the latest figures.

The Office for National Statistics released their quarterly regional labour market statistics for the three months leading up to August 2018.

It showed that unemployment in Wales was at 3.8 percent, lower than the UK average of 4 percent. In the whole of the UK, only south-east England (2.7 percent) and the east of England (3 percent) had a lower rate of unemployment.

The employment rate in Wales has risen 1.1 percent since the last quarter, now standing at 75.1 percent.

First Minister Carwyn Jones said: ““These figures are testament to the Welsh Government’s sustained and ongoing work to support businesses and make it easier for people to access jobs.

“Just this week our new Wales and Borders rail service launched under the management of Transport for Wales, who will oversee a total Welsh Government investment of almost £5bn to create an integrated public transport network.

“This investment will result in the production of new made in Wales trains, and over the life of the rail contract, the creation of 600 new jobs and 450 apprenticeships at Transport for Wales alone.

“With a Brexit deal still yet to be secured, these are increasingly uncertain times. We will continue to do all we can to strengthen Wales’ economy in innovative and effective ways so we are in the strongest possible position to face the challenges ahead.”

Secretary of State for Wales Alun Cairns MP said: “Today’s impressive employment figures are testament to the Welsh businesses and entrepreneurs that are clearly getting on with what they do best - creating jobs and selling their expertise around the world.

“With a record number of people in employment and the number of people out of work at a record low, Wales is showing an increasingly confident and entrepreneurial face to the world.

“An ambitious and growing private business sector has had a key part to play in this, bolstered by the support measures put in place by the UK Government that enables our private sector to flourish and helps build an economy that works for everyone.”

In Wales, 45,847 are unemployed or are claiming Jobseekers Allowance or Universal Credit.

In the Gwent region, that number breaks down to 3,540 in Newport, 2,455 in Caerphilly, 1,980 in Torfaen, 1,095 in Blaenau Gwent, and 645 in Monmouthshire.

The figures also showed a 50 percent drop in youth unemployment since 2010, with more than 120,000 more young people have a job than in 2010.

The Youth Unemployment (18 to 21-year-olds) in Torfaen and Newport currently stands at 815 combined (355 people Torfaen and 460 in Newport).

Clare Djordjevitch from Cwmbran Jobcentre said: “We work very closely with this demographic and are really keen to showcase our commitment to helping young unemployed people.

“Youth Obligation sessions are delivered for unemployed 18 to 21-year-olds and aims to encourage and support all young people into employment, work-related training or an apprenticeship. motivation, confidence, producing a CV, how to job search and how to budget are all covered in the sessions.”