Number of blacks with jobs more than doubled since 1994: IRR


Number of blacks with jobs more than doubled since 1994: IRR

Ernest Mabuza | 2017-02-06 10:39:33.0

The number of black workers has doubled since 1994. File photo.


The number of black people with jobs has more than doubled since 1994‚ highlighting the racially transformative nature of the country’s labour market.

This is revealed in the Institute of Race Relations’ transformation audit‚ which reveals that racial transformation of the South African workplace has been significant and continues to improve.

The report said data from Stats SA showed that close to 5-million black people had a job in 1994 and this increased to 11.5-million in 2016.

The institute said critics who claimed there was jobless growth and that the labour market was biased against black people were wrong on the facts.

The institute said the unemployment rate had remained unchanged since 1994 despite the extent of job growth.

It said the rising participation rate in the labour market meant the extent of job growth had remained insufficient to reduce the unemployment rate.

The institute said while the number of black African people increased by 32.1% since 2001‚ the number employed as managers increased by 176.3%.

The institute said that if transformation could be said to be “held back”‚ that would be primarily because of failures in education.

“Our sense is that the extent of racial transformation in the economy is informed by the performance of the education system.

“If transformation is said to be ‘held back’‚ that would be primarily because of failures in education and not a lack of will‚” the institute’s chief operating officer‚ Gwen Ngwenya‚ said.

She said while black South Africans accounted for 80.7% of the population‚ they constituted only 51.4% of all people with a post-matric qualification.

She said the education levels of black South Africans presented a “transformation ceiling”.

“Putting in place targets beyond the available pool of skills places an unrealisable goal for employers and will strangle South Africa’s economic growth rate‚” Ngwenya said.

– TMG Digital

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