POLICIES to boost job growth in "lagging" regions were needed if the Government was to meet its goal of 80% of working age people in work, says a think tank.
The Institute for Public Policy Research said that despite strong employment growth in recent years, there was not full employment everywhere.
A stronger focus was needed on improving employment rates in regions such as the north- east of England.
Almost one in five of the working age population in the North-East were claiming benefits.
In Middlesbrough, only one in three people with no qualifications had a job.