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Zuma Appeals to Private Sector  for Jobs
World Economy

Zuma Appeals to Private Sector for Jobs

Despite acquiring education, many young South Africans are struggling to secure employment, President Jacob Zuma said.

“Our youth has responded positively to our promotion of education. They continue to flock to higher education institutions each year, seeking education. However, another problem still remains,” Zuma told thousands of people, gathered at the annual National Youth Day commemorations in Pretoria on Tuesday, AllAfrica reported.

“The economy is not growing as fast as we want and is not creating as many jobs as we need. As a result, many of our graduates sit at home without jobs.”

Zuma called on the private sector to increase youth employment through taking young people for internships and apprentices in line with South Africa’s youth employment accord. “We have to work together to provide opportunities for the youth, who are the future of our country. Government cannot perform this task alone. We thank all businesses that continue to employ young people and offer opportunities to them,” he said.

“We are also encouraging young people to become entrepreneurs. The Industrial Development Corporation in partnership with the NYDA and the Small Enterprise Finance Agency have ring-fenced R2.7-billion ($217.4 million) over the next five years for young people to take up opportunities in business.”

He said in the last financial year, the National Youth Development Agency (NYDA) supported 1 043 micro and small youth owned enterprises. “Furthermore, the NYDA has provided non-financial business development support to 62,990 young aspiring and established entrepreneurs,” Zuma said.

Economic Growth

Africa’s fitful and uneven economic growth will gain momentum this year and next, three prominent organizations said in a joint report released recently.

On average, the continent’s economies will grow 4.5% in 2015 and 5% in 2016, according to the annual African Economic Outlook report by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, the African Development Bank and the United Nations Development Program.

While the trend indicates African economies will return to closely tracking emerging Asian ones as the world’s fastest-growing regions, progress is patchy and precarious, the report noted.

But southern Africa, once the continent’s economic leader, mainly because of South Africa’s performance, is becoming a drag on overall growth. The region will grow 3.1% in 2015, the report said, well below the 4.5% continental average for the same period.

South Africa’s negative impact is highlighted by the fact that southern Africa would have grown 4.6%, were South Africa excluded from the calculations. Africa’s second-largest economy by gross domestic product, but its most advanced, is seen growing 2%, according to the report, and has been dogged by large-scale labor disputes and energy shortages, frequently leaving its key mining sector without electricity.

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