250 new jobs are being created in Hartlepool.
The engineering company Heerema is expanding its workforce to continue building four giant offshore platforms.
It says more jobs will be created in the supply chain.
But one MP has warned that it's too early to say that the economy is recovering.
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Iain Wright, MP for Hartlepool said: “I welcome the extra 250 jobs that have beencreated here.
“We need to ensure that the skills, supply chainand industrial capability we have continue to make Britain a leading player inthe world for this type of engineering and manufacturing.”
250 new jobs have been created by Heerema Fabrication Group at its yard near Hartlepool.
The news has been welcomed by Hartlepool MP and Shadow Minister for Industry Iain Wright.
The company is working on a contract for the Cygnus gas field development in the southern North Sea.
Cygnus represents an investment of £1.4billion by operator GDF SUEZ E&P UK and partners Centrica Energy and Bayerngas.
It is the largest southern gas basin discovery for 25 years and at peak will produce enough gas to meet the needs of 1.5million UK homes.
Unemployment in the North East fell by 3,000 in the three months to December.
The Office for National Statistics figures show 130,000 people were unemployed in the region between October and December.
The region's unemployment rate was 10% and it had a fall of 2.3% during that time. Unemployment nationally has continued to fall and a record number of women are in work. Employment now stands at more than 30 million, a rate of 72.1%, which is 0.6% higher than a year ago.
More people are claiming benefits in the North East than anywhere else. 5.8% of people are claiming.
The employment rate in the North East is lower than anywhere else in Great Britain. It stands at 67.4%
10% of people in the North East are unemployed. This is the highest rate of unemployment in the UK.
Regional unemployment fiugures between October and December were as follows:
- North East: 130,000 (minus 3,000) 10%
- North West: 277,000 (minus 6,000) 8.1%
- Yorkshire/Humber: 240,000 (minus 8,000) 8.6%
- East Midlands: 162,000 (minus 4,000) 6.9%
- West Midlands: 226,000 (minus 31,000) 8.3%
- East of England: 180,000 (minus 1,000) 5.7%
- London: 351,000 (minus 25,000) 8.1%
- South East: 233,000 (minus 37,000) 5.1%
- South West: 177,000 (plus 3,000) 6.5%
- Wales: 105,000 (minus 12,000) 7.1%
- Scotland: 195,000 (minus 3,000) 7.1%
- Northern Ireland: 64,000 (plus 1,000) 7.4%