The Northern Cape has the highest expanded unemployment rate in the country with almost half the Province’s population unemployed.
According to the latest statistics released by Stats SA, the expanded unemployment rate (which includes the unemployed as well as those available for work who did not look for work) in the Province has jumped to 45.3 percent in the second quarter (April to June) of this year.
This is an increase of 5.5 percent in comparison to the same period last year, when the expanded unemployment rate in the Province was 39.8 percent. In the first quarter of this year it was sitting at 43.7 percent.
At 45.3 percent, the Province has the highest expanded unemployment rate in the country, followed by the Eastern Cape (44.5 percent), North West (42 percent) and Mpumalanga (41.5 percent).
The official unemployment rate in the Province is 30.5 percent, up from 27.4 percent last year.
Nationally, on a quarter-to-quarter basis, the official unemployment rate remained unchanged at 27.7 percent, and increased by 1.1 percent year-on-year.
On an annual basis, increases in the official unemployment rate were recorded in seven of the nine provinces, with the highest increase recorded in the Eastern Cape (5.8 percent), Mpumalanga (3.5 percent), Northern Cape (3.1 percent) and Free State (2.2 percent).
The Western Cape and the North West were the only provinces where the unemployment rate declined.
Compared to the first quarter of 2017, the expanded unemployment rate increased by 0.2 percent in the second quarter of this year to 36.6 percent.
Year-on-year, the expanded unemployment rate increased in five of the nine provinces, with the Northern Cape (5.5 percent) and Free State (2.4 percent) recording the largest increases. Limpopo, North West and Gauteng recorded declines in the expanded unemployment rate.
Meanwhile, the number of employed persons in the Northern Cape has dropped by a whopping 11 000 over the last year.
The number of people employed in the Province dropped from 299 000 in the first quarter of this year to 292 000 in the second quarter – a decrease of 3.6 percent.
The year-on-year change between the second quarter of 2017 and the second quarter of 2016 shows a drop of 3.6 percent from 303 000 in April to June 2016 to 292 000 over the same period in 2017.
The number of employed persons decreased in five of the nine provinces between the first quarter of 2017 and the second quarter.
The largest employment losses were recorded in Gauteng (143 000) and the Eastern Cape (26 000), while Limpopo (32 000) and KwaZulu-Natal (29 000) recorded the largest employment gains.
Compared to the second quarter of 2016, employment increased in seven of the nine provinces, with the Western Cape (137 000), Gauteng (109 000) and KwaZulu-Natal (105 000) recording the highest employment gains.
During the same period, employment losses were recorded in the Free State (21 000) and Northern Cape (11 000).
According to a report issued young people (15 to 24 years) remain vulnerable in the labour market with an unemployment rate of almost 56 percent and an absorption rate of 12 percent.
Among those in this age group, 32.2 percent are not in employment, education or training. “This is approximately 3.3 million young people aged 15 to 24 years who are idle,” the report states.
The expanded unemployment rate includes an extra 3.1 million persons who were available to work but did not look for work (an increase of 0.2 percent to 36.6 percent).
“This is approximately 9.3 million people aged 15 to 64 who wanted to work and were available to work but their labour was not utilised,” the report states.
Some of the sectors that recorded the biggest job losses in the Northern Cape were the agricultural sector (which decreased year-on-year by 14.5 percent) and the construction sector, which dropped by 28.7 percent from the second quarter of 2016 to the second quarter of this year.
The number of people working in private households in the Province also dropped by 28 percent year-on-year. The mining industry, however, showed a growth of 73.1 percent year-on-year.
By: IOL News