With the economy growing stronger people are expecting more and more jobs to acccompany it. The Accelerated and Shared Growth Initiative for South Africa (AsgiSA) also raised a lot of hopes that the economy will create more jobs. Under AsgiSA, government has already started with programmes to unblock the things that are holding back growth.
Jobs for Growth
Jobs for Growth is a national programme that is part of AsgiSA. It will soon be launched. The programme will be run by the Ministries of Land Affairs and Agriculture and of Trade and Industry. It aims to create about a million jobs over the next three to five years. The jobs created through this programme will be mostly for poor people in rural areas and semi-rural areas around the cities. It will support people who want to start small businesses including co-operatives in these areas. It will also help people to develop skills to do so. This will ensure that rural areas do not have to depend on big cities for employment.
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Deputy President Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka was the guest speaker when stakeholders met in April to finalise the plans for Jobs for Growth. Representatives from government, business, labour and NGOs attended the meeting. The Deputy president said the programme would support people to produce quality products that could be sold at good prices in the marketplace. In this way, people will be able to do things for themselves rather than having things done for them. “It must ensure that people come out of poverty for good,” she said. The country’s economic growth must be shared by all South Africans, Mlambo-Ngcuka said. There have been a number of plans in the past to fight poverty, but they have not focused enough on those with few opportunities, like farm workers and uneducated women. Jobs for Growth will ensure that many of those jobs go to poor women. They will also be encouraged to join self-help groups.
The youth will also be involved in this programme and will be informed on how they can take part.
More details on the Jobs for Growth programme will be made known later this year.
- Ndivhuwo Khangale