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Caithness News Bulletins July 2005

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Caithness Socio - Economic Forum Established
At a meeting called by Mrs Pat Buchanan, Chair of Caithness and Sutherland Enterprise, a new Forum was established to plan for the regeneration of the local economy in the face of the decommissioning of the Dounreay site.

The meeting elected John Thurso MP as its Chairman and others represented included CASE, the North Highland College, UKAEA, the Dounreay Stakeholders’ Group, the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority, Highland Council and the Association of Community Councils. Mr Jamie Stone MSP was unable to attend this meeting but will play an active role in the future.

Speaking after his election as Chairman, John Thurso said, “The challenge that faces us today is to ensure that the economic activity of the area at least remains at its current level and ideally, increases during the decommissioning phase of Dounreay.

To do this, we must identify new industries and technologies that can provide sustain able employment for the people of the area as the Dounreay workforce numbers reduce. This is both a major challenge and opportunity and I am delighted to have been elected a Chairman of this Forum which I believe will be instrumental in achieving this aim.”

The principal purpose of the meeting was to set the scene for the future work of the Forum and it was agreed that the first working meeting would be held towards the end of August at which detailed terms of reference would be established.

The Forum is likely to meet monthly and will consider a wide range of possibilities for economic development of the area. It will begin by assessing the timescale and impact of decommissioning and will seek to establish a strategy for alternative employment in the future.

The Dounreay Decommissioning Programme has been accelerated to an interim completion in 2036. One in five jobs in the area is directly related to Dounreay activities.  3. The GDP of the local area is 17% higher than that for the rest of the Highlands.

Economic Information For HIE & CASE
Caithness and Sutherland Information about the counties of Caithness and Sutherland,in the Highlands of Scotland.

Main settlement summaries Details of the main settlements in Caithness and Sutherland - Thurso, Dornoch, Wick, Golspie, Brora and Halkirk.

Population Statistics on the population of Caithness and Sutherland.

Earnings Earnings in Caithness and Sutherland.

Employer Skills Survey 2002 Results of Futureskills Scotland survey of employers in Caithness and Sutherland.

The labour market The key issues of the Caithness and Sutherland labour market.

Economic activity Economic activity in Caithness and Sutherland.

Our economy Information on a range of subjects, including the economy of Caithness and Sutherland, key sectors and quality of life.

Introduction Local economic and labour market information for Caithness and Sutherland.

Labour market information Labour market information from a survey of businesses in Caithness and Sutherland.

Recruitment Results of 2005 Caithness and Sutherland Business Survey - recruitment.

Unemployment Unemployment in Caithness and Sutherland.

Labour demand Results of 2005 Caithness and Sutherland Business Survey - labour demand.