The head of a UK think-tank has called for assistance for a "fragile" labour market.

Nigel Meager, director of the Institute for Employment Studies, suggested that with contributing factors – such as impending public spending cuts, 2.5 million people in unemployment and a high level of economic inactivity – it could mean the recruitment picture remains bleak.

He warned that the UK’s economic recovery was far from confirmed and, should the government push on with more immediate cost savings, the potential for further damage to the market still exists.

In particular, he expressed concern about high levels of youth and long-term unemployment and the need to address this issue.

"Continued action to support these groups back into work will be critical in preventing the legacy of long-term worklessness in many communities following previous recessions," he added.

According to its website, the think-tank aims to enhance employment policy in Britain through detailed investigation of the market.

By Hayley Edwards