Following the release of the States of Guernsey’s latest quarterly population, employment and earnings statistics, Richard Hemans, the IoD Guernsey’s lead on economics, said: ‘The latest bulletin is packed with interesting information relevant to the island’s economic health. The island’s population increased at the fastest pace since 2008 and the level of net migration, wholly responsible for the increase, shows how attractive the island is to people seeking to relocate.’
‘Of course, this is a double-edged sword in that it puts further pressure on the island’s limited housing stock and public resources, but it is better than the nightmare scenario of depopulation.
‘The dependency ratio has deteriorated marginally over the last three years, but the long-term trend is clear and the imperative to address this through improvements in productivity and labour force participation rates remains as compelling as ever.
’Employment has recovered strongly since the pandemic but remains lower than pre-pandemic levels, which is consistent with the experience of many other developed countries and explains some of the labour market pressures. This is underlined by the very low level of unemployment and the high number of vacancies, which are leaving employers struggling to recruit and meet demand.
‘The impact of inflation on consumers and workers is reinforced in that real earnings declined by 1.4% over the last twelve months in spite of a 4.2% increase in nominal earnings, leaving them struggling to maintain their standard of living and depressing consumption.
‘All of this paints a picture of an economy that is overall very strong but facing significant pressures on housing, public finances, business activity and consumer spending.’