Unemployment still too high in Eastern Cape

South African moneyThe unemployment rate in the Eastern Cape remains too high. The province has the second highest unemployment rate at 30,8 %, according to the Quarterly Labour Force Survey.

Only the Free State fared worse in the third quarter, where the unemployment rate is 34%.

Rampant corruption and the consequences of cadre deployment are scaring off potential investors.

Anger with the current government is increasing as people feel that one needs to be connected to get a job, especially in the civil service.

The Eastern Cape has the highest expanded unemployment rate, of 44,3%. The expanded unemployment rate includes people who have given up on looking for work, which represents 1, 059 000 people (aged 15-65).

Getting a job is the most important step on the ladder of opportunity. It enables one to get ahead in life and escape the poverty trap.

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What the Eastern Cape needs is strong political leadership to turn this province around.

Three crucial steps must be implemented to improve job prospects: quality in the education system; enhancing youth employment prospects by implementing the youth wage subsidy; and creating an enabling environment for entrepreneurs by cutting red tape and corruption and delivering basic services at attractive rates.

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We need to optimise exiting economic opportunities in the province.

The recent labour unrest in the motor industry is a serious disincentive for foreign direct investment.

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