Estimates suggest that the number of jobless South Africans will increase from 6,2-million in 2010 to 16,8-million in 2020, consistent with an increase in the narrow unemployment rate from 25,3% to 45,5%, Loane Sharp, a director at Adcorp, tells SmartProcurement.
The projected figure of 16,8-million in 2020 includes 5,2-million students aged between 15 and 24 years who are currently in the secondary and tertiary education systems, plus 7,4-million students who will replace them over the next five years, net of exits from the labour force, Adcorp said in its November employment report.
The current figure of 6,2-million includes discouraged work-seekers.
“In 1994 South Africa’s unemployed represented 13% of the workforce, this has climbed dramatically to 26% in 2010” said Sharp in an interview on Classic FM in early November.
Adcorp’s “conservative” estimates predict that unemployment will exceed 40% of the workforce by 2020, notwithstanding the apparently co-ordinated efforts of the Government.
Of South Africa’s population of about 50-million, more than 20-million are under the age of 20 – 40%. As summarised in the report, it is the youth who are bearing the brunt of the ineffectualness of government programmes to stimulate employment.
Sharp stated that the current and impending state of affairs demonstrates a massive waste and in-consequence of the Government’s sector SETAs.
The figures have ramifications for future strategic planning models, which must make provision for skills development from the secondary school level.