Friday, 17th August 2012
Decent Work Country Profile: South Africa
Source: International Labour Office
The Decent Work Country Profile for South Africa analyses progress and challenges across the ten internationally agreed thematic areas of decent work. Within each area, the profile is based on a set of Decent Work Indicators; and information on rights at work and the legal framework for decent work is presented in the form of Legal Framework Indicators. Internationally recommended sets of indicators are used for both the Statistical Decent Work Indicators and Legal Framework Indicators (LFI). However, the profile departs from the international recommendations where data for particular indicators is not available in South Africa. There are also several additions or adaptations of indicators to suit the South African context...
(D)espite its middle income status, South Africa is characterized by high levels of poverty and high income inequality between population (race) groups and within groups.
The high rate of unemployment in South Africa emerges as a key issue in the area of employment opportunities. The New Growth Path document launched in late 2010 envisages the creation of five million new jobs by 2020. Its vision is that by that time more than half of all working-age South Africans would be in paid employment and unemployment would have fallen to approximately 15 per cent. However, the unemployment rate, which was slightly above 22 per cent in the period 2006 through 2008, increased to 24.9 per cent in 2010, i.e. ten percentage points higher than the New Growth Path goal. If those who have given up looking for work are included, the expanded unemployment rate stood at 35.8 per cent overall in 2010 – 31.5 per cent for men and 40.7 per cent for women. There are further stark differences by race group and – as elsewhere in the world – substantially higher unemployment rates for youth than for older people.
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By Adrian Janes
Having begun his career in academic libraries, Adrian Janes is currently an Information Services Librarian with the London Borough of Havering.
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