Job targets difficult to achieve – MEC

2012-09-22 07:57

Slow global economic growth will make attaining the country’s employment targets difficult, Gauteng economic development MEC Nkosiphendule Kolisile said.

“The crisis itself makes our national target of creating five million jobs by 2020 extremely difficult to attain,” he told the Gauteng legislature yesterday.

“We have to pursue new markets for our commodities, industrial products and services.”

Kolisile said in the current economic climate job creation remained a problem for Gauteng.

“While we contribute 34% to the GDP, we are still faced with an unemployment rate of 25.4%,” he said.

“Our ability to alter this reality depends on the strategies we put in place to ensure our economy grows from the current 3% to 7% per annum.”

He said the Marikana shooting reminded government that inequality was “a dreadful beast that threatened to devour our society into chaos”.

Government had a critical role to play in addressing the legacy of inequality in the country, he said.

“We have also been emphatic on the need to ensure that our economy is inclusive and that the wealth created in our province is adequately redistributed.”

Kolisile said his department had made inroads in formalising businesses and creating jobs in townships.

One initiative was setting up Township Enterprise Hubs which would help grow township businesses.

Another was a project called Y-Age, which had attracted over 100 000 young people who wanted to succeed as entrepreneurs, and will also offer them training.

Last year, he said, the Gauteng Growth and Development Agency had successfully promoted investments that generated 2 000 permanent jobs and 1 346 temporary jobs.

This brought to 3 346 the number of jobs created by property development, information and communications technology, manufacturing and green economy sectors, the MEC said.

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