SA needs 10 million jobs in the next 10 years

"That would mean 83,000 jobs a month," he said in Johannesburg at the release of trade union UASA’s 10th employment report.

"South Africa needs to create more jobs than the five million government is aiming for."

He said South Africa had no other option but to outperform in the next decade.

"We are not in a good situation we need a lot of employment growth."

About 350,000 new jobs had been created in South Africa over the last 11 years but there had been a massive drop in those self-employed, Schussler said.

In 2001 there were 2.2 million self-employed and in 2010 it was 1.1 million.

Employers employing more than four people other than themselves dropped from about 350,000 to 300,000 over the same period, he said.

"This indicates that employee numbers actually increased substantially but employer numbers dropped dramatically," he said.

"The problem, however, remains that for South Africa to obtain the international average adult employed ratio or the new growth plan we need to increase the number of jobs at least tenfold."

He said South Africa needed to free up entrepreneurship.

The ratio of adults employed fell from about 53 percent in 1991 to 40.8 percent in 2010.

"This is a substantial fall in the ratio of South Africans employed, however the actual number of employed adults has risen, it’s just that the South African population has risen much faster."

Schussler said internationally economic growth had resulted in jobs.

The number of employees from countries that had signed the World Trade Organisation agreement had grown from 1.5 billion to three billion between 1991 and 2009.

Economist Vuledzani Ndou said according to data from the International Labour Organisation jobs had increased worldwide from 1.8 billion to 3.3 billion.

Economic growth between 2000 and 2010 had only increased by three percent in South Africa. Developing countries had increased by 17.1 percent, advanced countries by 4.9 percent, newly industrialised Asian countries by 12.5 percent and the world in general by 15.4 percent.

The amount of non-working adults was growing quicker than working adults.

Ndou said there was a decrease in the active labour force from 61 percent to 54 percent between 2001 and 2010.

Employment rates in South Africa were some of the lowest in the world.

"We are far behind… we are not on par with the world," she said.

There were 205 million unemployed people in the world. The average worker in the world earned 42 percent more in 2008 than in 1990.

On this basis South African workers earned 16 percent more in real terms, compared to Chinese workers who now earned 305 percent more and Indians earned 110 percent more.

Schussler said innovation and learning helped increase workers’ well-being.

"South Africa had outperformed the world in educational increases as less than 23 percent of our workforce had a matric qualification or more in 1991," he said.

"In 2010 just over 37 percent of our adult population had finished school or more."

However, South Africa was lagging in specialised education.

Despite this educational attainment, the percentage of adults employed had fallen from about 46 percent to about 41 percent.

Schussler said South Africa had more labour laws than most countries around the world and it had more people than ever employed by the state.

"The private sector is taking its time in employing people and for that there must be a reason," he said.–economist

[date:] 2011-06-10

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