The race against un­em­ploy­ment

Finweek English Edition - - Economic trends & analysis - GARTH THE­UNIS­SEN

Gthe ma­jor­ity of un­em­ployed in­di­vid­u­als are black. A full 30,5% of black South Africans re­main un­em­ployed com­pared with 19,4% of coloureds, 9,6% of In­dian/Asians and just 4,5% of whites.

N ev e r t h e - less, blacks have made rea­son­able progress since Septem­ber 2001, when 35,7% of them had no jobs. That’s a de­crease of 5,3 per­cent­age points over the past six years.

In­ter­est­ingly, In­dian/Asian South Africans seem to have made the best progress. In Septem­ber 2001, 18,8% of that pop­u­la­tion group was un­em­ployed, but by Septem­ber 2006 that had al­most halved to 9,6%.

Coloureds did not fare quite IVEN SOUTH AFRICA’S his­tory, it may seem taste­less to com­pare the de­creases in the un­em­ploy­ment rates of the coun­try’s dif­fer­ent racial group­ings over the past six years. How­ever, with race still play­ing such a di­rect role in ev­ery­day life in SA, it seems trite to over­look the anal­y­sis.

Though SA’s of­fi­cial un­em­ploy­ment rate may have de­clined to 25,5% in Septem­ber 2006 from 30,4% in Septem­ber 2002, the sad fact is that as well. The un­em­ploy­ment rate of that group dropped from 21,2% in 2001 to 19,4% in 2006 – a de­crease of just 1,8 per­cent­age points.

How­ever, the poor­est per­form­ers were white. With an over­all un­em­ploy­ment rate of 4,5%, that group man­aged to shave just 1,3 per­cent­age points off the 5,8% un­em­ploy­ment rate it recorded in Septem­ber 2001.

Then again, as a pro­por­tion of the over­all un­em­ploy­ment rate in 2001 that’s not bad go­ing, and sug-

The sad fact is that the ma­jor­ity of un­em­ployed

in­di­vid­u­als are black.

gests whites don’t re­ally have that much to com­plain about. The dif­fi­cult part would be con­vinc­ing them of that.


Source: Sta­tis­tics SA

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