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“Western Cape created 40% of all new jobs in SA last year” – MEC Alan Winde

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Alan Winde - [Google Images] Alan Winde - [Google Images]

A rise in unemployment figures left South Africa shellshocked on Tuesday, but Western Cape Minister for Economic Opportunities Alan Winde says his province has a few reasons to be cheerful.

His department shared StatsSA’s breakdown of the Cape’s performance in the jobs market over these last 12 months, which show the region outperforming all others.

Employment figures in the Western Cape

The Quarterly Labour Force Survey, for the period April to June 2018, indicates that 77 000 new jobs were created in the Western Cape over the past year, representing a 3.2% increase.

Given that almost 250 000 jobs have been lost in that quarter, it’s a stellar performance from the Cape. The provincial unemployment rate is at 23.2%, which is 4% lower than the national rate of 27.2%.

What industries are creating jobs in the Cape?

The local construction industry was responsible for a further 18 000 jobs being created, whereas 16 000 opportunities to work in the transport industry were forged. The formal sector in the City of Cape Town has formed a further 50 000 jobs, too.

 

Winde was delighted with the progress made by local industry:

“The Western Cape continues to be a major contributor to employment in the country, and was responsible for creating 77 000 of the 188 000 new jobs in South Africa in the past year – more than any other province.”

“Increases in the metro area reflect the investor confidence we’ve seen in sectors like technology and the green economy. Large corporations like Amazon, Hisense and now also Panasonic have shown a willingness to grow their business here.”

Western Cape job losses

However, the Western Cape must still take the rough with the smooth. Despite positive job creation, it ranked in the top three provinces for job losses. A mind-boggling contrast even to the most prudent economist.

Winde blamed this decline on the agricultural industry. Not only have jobs been slashed due to the severe restrictions imposed by drought, but a lot of farm work is “seasonal”. People who have taken on work for the harvest will have seen their short-term gigs come to an end in the previous quarter.

“The drought has had a significant impact on the agricultural industry and the quarterly employment statistics in this sector reflect that. However, we are pleased that year on year, we have not seen any negative impact in this sector which is responsible for a large proportion of rural job creation.”

Transport and construction, which performed well in the Cape, also experience growth on a national scale. Almost 100 000 jobs were created between the two industries. The mining sector also saw an additional 38 000 work opportunities come to fruition.

 


 

TheSouthAfrican

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