Unemployment rate hits 29% in South Africa

The latest figures pressures President Ramaphosa’s administration which campaigned in May to revive the economy
Unemployment rate hits 295 in South Africa

Unemployment in South Africa has reached 29 per cent, the highest level since the country’s quarterly labour force survey was introduced 11 years ago, the statistics office said on Tuesday.

“The unemployment rate increased by 1.4 percentage points from 27.6 per cent in the first quarter of 2019 to 29.0 per cent in the second quarter of 2019,” StatsSA said in its quarterly report.

“This is the highest level recorded since …2008,” said StatsSA.

The latest figures pile pressure on President Cyril Ramaphosa’s newly elected administration which campaigned in the May elections with promises of reviving the economy and creating jobs.

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Some 49,000 jobs were lost during the quarter with the mining, transport, construction trade and banking sectors shedding the most jobs. 

South Africa’s banks, mining and construction sectors have in recent months signalled mass layoffs as gross domestic product contracted by 3.2 per cent in the first three months of 2019 in Africa’s most developed economy, the largest quarterly drop in about 10 years.

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