Young Farmers Beat Youth Unemployment through Agriculture

Youth unemployment is a serious challenge in South Africa (SA). In 2011, nearly half of 18-35 year olds were unemployed. Many young people have given up hope of ever finding work.

Agriculture is often dismissed as an option for young people. Many in South Africa claim that youth simply are not interested in agriculture. Our experience says different.

ANC Clarifies Position on Job Seekers Grant

The African National Congress (ANC) says that a proposed job seekers grant to help unemployed young people find work will not replace the youth wage subsidy.

ANC head of policy, Jeff Radebe, points out that the proposal for the job seekers grant was submitted by the National Youth Development Agency and the African National Congress Youth League.

In the same vein, President Jacob Zuma, who says the job seekers grant will help young people while they actively look for employment, added that the grant will be also linked to the compulsory skills development programmes.

Green Jobs for SA Economy

As South Africa focuses on pro-poor growth and job creation, tens of thousands of new posts in the booming green economy are being filled by young job-seekers.

Trumpeting the job creation successes of her department’s green sector projects at a World Environment Day function in the Free State, Environmental Affairs Minister, Edna Molewa, said that the country welcomes the worldwide shift towards green economies, since it is endowed with a wealth of biodiversity.

Khoza Calls for Visionary Leadership

Nedbank chairperson, Ruel Khoza, says that an absence of visionary leadership is a major stumbling block for entrepreneurs in South Africa.

Khoza, who was recently criticised by the ruling African National Congress for criticising the quality of political leadership in the country, points out that, “Leadership at all levels should demonstrate a commitment to creative freedom."

He states that small, medium and micro enterprises (SMMES) should form the backbone of South Africa's economy, since big business and the state cannot provide enough jobs.

UN, ADB, Back Youth Wage Subsidy

Lynley Donnelly, who is currently in Arusha, Tanzania as a guest of the African Development Bank, says that as South Africa grapples with the idea of a youth subsidy, an international report has recommended providing firms with such incentives to hire young people.

The report, ‘African Economic Outlook 2012’, notes that in some countries direct or indirect incentives are offered to companies in exchange for recruiting young people.

Partnership to Boost Job Creation

The South African office of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), Business Unity South Africa (BUSA) and the Black Business Council (BBC) have signed a memorandum of understanding to conduct global studies into local procurement before creating a programme that could boost job creation.

The groups say they decided to create a plan with tangible short-term goals because government’s goal of five-million new jobs in the next decade, contained in its New Growth Path strategy, is in jeopardy.

Zuma Backs Youth Wage Subsidy

President Jacob Zuma has given the assurance that the government intends going ahead with its planned wage subsidy to cut youth unemployment, but its final design could still be negotiated.

Zuma also hinted that rules could be established to address concerns raised by the Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU).

Emboldened by recent government climb-downs at its insistence, COSATU says it will continue to try to influence economic policy, which includes persuading the government to abandon the subsidy.

75 000 Jobs in First Quarter of 2012 – Survey

The Statistics South Africa (Stats SA) has announced that the South Africa shed 75 000 jobs in the first quarter of 2012.

In its quarterly labour force survey, Stats SA says this was despite growth in the agricultural sector, which gained 26 000 jobs, and in private households, which created a 33 000 jobs during this quarter.

However, it says that the number of job losses were still down on the last quarter of 2011, when the formal sector shed 107 000 jobs. The survey further found that 28 000 jobs were lost in the informal sector in the first quarter of 2012.

World Vision Partakes in Growing Farming Skills Among Women!

Under normal circumstances, women from rural areas make excuses from the demands of family life, claiming these make it impossible for them to focus on their personal and entrepreneurial development. However, Mosele Qhusheka, 46, has dispelled this belief. Lack of resources, finance, training, appropriate technology and poor infrastructure, that continue to torment our female farmers were not enough to hinder her from realising her dream.


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