South African government happy with job growth statistics

MEC Beverley Schäfer welcomes StatsSA's findings on job growth. Photo: South African Media

JOHANNESBURG, SOUTH AFRICA (ADV) – The Member of the Executive Council (MEC) in the Western Cape Province’s Economic Opportunities Department, Beverley Schäfer, has welcomed the Statistics South Africa (StatsSA)’s job growth findings.

According to Stats SA, the Western Cape has recorded the lowest expanded unemployment rate and the highest labour absorption rate in the country, and this indicates that the province’s efforts to create an environment conducive to economic growth and job creation are paying off.

“If we look at the complete picture, this data shows that there are fewer unemployed people in the province, and more opportunities for employment in the Western Cape,” Minister of Economic Opportunities,” said Schäfer.

StatsSA released their Quarterly Labour Force Survey data for the fourth quarter of 2018 today. According to the data, the Western Cape created 29 000 new jobs over the past year and 26 000 between October and December last year.

This represents a year on year increase in employment of 1.2 percent.
The unemployment rate also declined in the province, and it now stands at 19.3 percent. The province has the lowest expanded unemployment rate in the country, which at 23.1 percent, is nearly 14 percentage points lower than the national rate of 37 percent.

“This is remarkable given that we experienced one of the worst droughts on record in 2018 and continue to still feel the impact of the drought in some areas of the province. Our efforts to create jobs in the rural areas, through interventions like Project Khulisa are clearly showing results,” added Schäfer.

Key sectors that contribute to the employment growth in the province were agriculture, which saw an increase of 10.3 percent year on year, transport, which grew by 8.2 percent year on year and the finance sector, which recorded year on year gains of 2.1 percent.

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