THERE has been a slight improvement in Shoalhaven’s unemployment rate, which Shoalhaven City Council attributes to current and future construction projects.
Last year saw a 1 per cent decline in the unemployment rate. Although not seen as an extremely large figure, it represents an improvement for the region, whose unemployment rate of 12 per cent is twice the national average.
The Shoalhaven is in line for upgrades and improvements over the next few years with new construction projects promising more job opportunities.
Work is well under way on the $8.5 million project to construct 40 Quest serviced apartments on the corner of Kinghorne and Plunkett streets in Nowra.
The project will generate 22 direct jobs with 52 jobs expected to flow on from it.
At HMAS Albatross $138 million is being spent on training and maintenance facilities for the new Seahawk Romeo helicopter. Among the works will be a support and logistics facility as well as a new army and helicopter aircrew training school.
The project is expected to generate 350 jobs with a flow-on effect of 853 jobs.
Shoalhaven City Council economic development officer Greg Pullen emphasised the need for these new projects to get under way in order to increase job opportunities and positively decrease the unemployment rate within the region.
“There will be jobs created and the town will grow and we should start to see the unemployment rate start to fall,” Mr Pullen said.
Mr Pullen said as well as construction, navy and aviation support jobs that would be generated by the base expansion, the economy would also be stimulated.