Government foresees period of huge employment creation
In two years’ time, the South African economy will create 825,000 direct and indirect jobs annually, by government projections.
Trade and industry minister Rob Davies said the estimates were based on interventions devised by labour, business and government in the agreement at the jobs summit last week.
President Cyril Ramaphosa also announced that the impact of the sectoral interventions for job creation and economic enablers for sector growth would lead to 275,000 direct new jobs in addition to the targeted 300,000 a year.
The summit announced more than 70 interventions focused on local procurement, industrial finance and growth of SA exports in a bid to create jobs as the country’s unemployment crisis deepens.
About 9.6-million people are without jobs. In a presentation on sectoral interventions creating employment at the summit, Davies said: "Based on a very conservative multiplier of two indirect jobs for every one direct job, we calculate that 550,000 indirect jobs will be created".
But Davies conceded these numbers were still below that of new entrants to the labour market, which is why unemployment remained stubborn.
He said estimates were based on the number of jobs that would be created by each intervention contained in the agreement.
"Its technical work. I trust it has been done with sufficient vigour for it to be realistic, but it’s a target, gives us a basis to measure progress and lack thereof.
"In some cases, there are big dividends where we put the right things where there was wrong, getting policy tools working, we were knocked off course by state capture and corruption," Davies told Business Day at the summit on Friday.
Interventions emanating from the summit include repackaged agreements on financing for black industrialists, farmers and agribusiness.
Meanwhile, the government has also committed itself to continuing support for its distressed firm fund run by the Industrial Development Corporation in an effort to retain existing jobs.
Davies said they also intended to "tilt the balance" in favour of more labour-intensive sectors of manufacturing while equally considering the impact of the fourth industrial revolution on the industry.