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Permanent vacancies for IT staff in the public sector grew by 18 per cent in the second quarter of this year and contract positions grew by 19 per cent.

For permanent jobs only the electronics and communications industry saw a larger increase: job vacancies in this market grew 31 per cent between April and June 2004.

Finance and manufacturing did less well, there was an increase in permanent vacancies of just eight and five per cent each in the second quarter.

Richard Nott, sales director at CWJobs, said: "demand for IT jobs in the public sector remains strong. The IT industry is the healthiest it has been in eighteen months and we anticipate that demand for IT personnel will reain steady as the industry makes a full recovery."

The most popular skills demanded by the public sector were Oracle, Office, SQL and Java. In terms of advertised salary Oracle developers can expect £50,000, SQL developers £47,000 and Java developers £43,000, figures for Office developers were not available. The rest of the Top Ten was: Unix (£51K), HTML (£48K), Prince(£NA), Windows2000 (£NA), SQL Server (£54K) and Visual Basic (£49K).

For contractors the most demanded skill in the public sector is also Oracle development. In second place is Office, then Prince, Unix and SQL. Average hourly rates for contractors were not available.

The CWJobs/SSL survey takes information from all the jobs advertised in the UK's leading IT and multi-sector recruitment web sites along with press and trade magazine adverts. ®

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