Africa (Xinhua) --
With South Africa battling high unemployment
levels and the shedding of jobs, President Cyril Ramaphosa on
Thursday called on businesses to consider exploring other
alternatives, including reducing executives’ high salaries
before embarking on layoffs.
Addressing delegates at
the Presidential Jobs Summit aimed at addressing unemployment,
retaining existing jobs and growing the ailing economy,
Ramaphosa said identified interventions should be implemented to
tackle the chronic challenge.
The two-day Job Summit in Midrand commenced on Thursday and
ends on Friday.
"As a result, the decline of the mining industry and
manufacturing has cost the country millions of jobs and much
economic capacity," said Ramaphosa.
As a critical starting point, social partners agreed that in
the current economic environment the Jobs Summit must focus on
both creating new jobs and retaining existing one, he said.
"There is agreement that all possible alternatives and
opportunities need to be explored before retrenchment is
considered, including executive salary sacrifices and the
foregoing of dividends," Ramaphosa said.
The summit brought together players from different fields
including business, labour and government with the aim of
creating jobs at a time when South Africa has an unemployment
rate of 27.2 percent .
"We need to address the challenge that South Africa is faced
with. Unemployment is a great challenge facing the country.
"Unemployment diminishes our ability to eradicate poverty and
"We need to grow an inclusive economy, the stimulus package
we announced will contribute to this job creation," he said.
The Congress of South African Trade Union (Cosatu) General
Secretary Bheki Ntshalintshali said that solutions were required
to address youth unemployment.
"Unemployment drives young people to crime and gangsterism.
"We have a crisis in our hands, we have debated this for a
long time, but we need to develop and adopt solutions that are
clear," Ntshalintshali said.
With many calling for a solution concerning the crisis,
during his state of the nation address this year, Ramaphosa
announced that the government would host the summit in a bid to
address the issue.
Figures released by Statistic South Africa last week revealed
that about 70,000 jobs were lost during the second quarter of
2018 in the country.
Ramaphosa added that the role players who are part of the
summit had agreed to drive job creation and were planning on
creating some 275,000 direct jobs a year.
Cape Town South Africa
ranked top opportunity city in Africa
CAPE TOWN South Africa (Xinhua) --
The City of Cape Town on Thursday
welcomed the decision by the World Bank to rank it as the top
opportunity metropolis in Africa.
"It is a confirmation of the city’s commitment to provide
better services to residents and create an enabling environment
for businesses to flourish, while creating fair access to jobs,"
said Cape Town’s Mayor-elect Dan Plato.
In its "Doing Business in South Africa" report released
earlier this week, the bank said that when it comes to the ease
of doing business, Cape Town is the number one metropolitan
municipality in Africa.
The World Bank assessed metros in 190 economies, including
South Africa’s nine metropolitan municipalities.
Cape Town came out on top of the eight South African metros
assessed in two of the World Bank’s four indicators.
Cape Town is South Africa’s legislative capital with a
population of about four million.
The city ranks first as the city in dealing with construction
"New businesses take 88 days to obtain all the necessary
licences and permits, completing required notifications and
inspections, nearly half to Johannesburg’s 155-day period.
Among other key indicators that were top priorities for
investors were reliable infrastructure which costs the city six
billion rand (about 416 million U.S. dollars) annually, fast
internet and energy security.
The city has set a goal of sourcing up to 20 percent of Cape
Town’s energy supply from renewable energy by 2020.
"While we are proud of its track record in government, I want
to echo Mayor Patricia De Lille’s sentiment that we must not
become complacent and continue to do all we can to provide
residents with better access to opportunities," said Plato, who
will replace De Lille by the end of October.
Plato said that when he became mayor, he would ensure that
the city build on the successes of the city and strengthen its
ties with the Western Cape provincial government so that
innovative programs that address the challenges the Capetonians
Cape Town is run by the opposition Democratic Alliance (DA).
"The DA-led City of Cape Town has made great progress and
together we will be able to do more so that every resident of
Cape Town is able to live their best life," Plato said.
South African Parliament
calls for comprehensive
strategic intervention to combat 'gang violence'
CAPE TOWN South Africa (Xinhua) --
South Africa’s Parliament on
Wednesday called for comprehensive strategic intervention to
combat rising gang violence that grips parts of the country.
Tackling gang violence is not only a matter of law and order
but comprehensive strategic intervention involving relevant
government departments, civil society, non-governmental
organizations, business, educational institutions, community
leaders and religious institutions, Parliament’s Portfolio
Committee on Police (PCP) said in a statement.
This came after a new spate of gang violence wrecked havoc on
communities across the country, particularly in Cape Town and
the Western Cape province which reported 808 gang-related
murders in the period from April 1, 2017 to April 31, 2018,
according to the latest crime statistics released by Police
Minister Bheki Cele last month.
In August this year, a fight among gangs vying to control
parks from where they want to sell drugs resulted in nine people
killed and 10 others wounded in a Cape Town suburb.
Earlier on Wednesday, community leaders in Cape Town
organized a march to Parliament to highlight gang violence in
the city and the Western Cape province.
PCP Chairperson Francois Beukman met with the community
leaders to hear their concerns and grievances.
Beukman said after the meeting that his committee takes very
seriously the concerns and complaints of the protesters about
police service delivery.
"When communities are under siege by criminals and their
ability to function as citizens becomes impaired, extraordinary
measures should be taken by law-enforcement agencies," said
He said a long-term and sustainable action plan to deal with
gang-related violence from a policing perspective should be
underpinned by the roll-out of operational command centers in
affected areas, the strengthening of crime intelligence
capability in affected areas, and strong collaboration between
police, intelligence and National Prosecuting Authority.
According to Beukman, his committee will invite the affected
communities, the SAPS, the Civilian Police Secretariat and the
Independent Police Investigative Directorate to a special
meeting to discuss rising gang violence.
The date for the meeting will be announced in the coming
week, he said.
From an oversight perspective, it is essential for Parliament
to scrutinize the current strategies and plans to deal with gang
and gun violence in communities to ensure that service delivery
is improved, Beukman added.
World Bank downgrades
South Africa growth forecasts
JOHANNESBURG South Africa (Xinhua)
-- The World
Bank downgraded South Africa’s growth forecast for 2018 on
Wednesday to 1 percent from 1.4 percent.
The World Bank also lowered South Africa’s growth forecasts
for 2019 to 1.3 percent from 1.8 percent and to 1.7 percent from
1.9 percent in 2020.
"Growth is expected to remain subdued in 2019, as domestic
demand is constrained by high unemployment and slow growth in
credit extension to households, and as fiscal consolidation
limits government spending," the World Bank stated in its
regional economic outlook for Africa.
"The higher growth in 2020 reflects the expectation that the
government’s structural reform agenda will gradually gather
speed, helping to boost investment growth, as policy uncertainty
recedes," World Bank noted.
The World Bank also believed South African president’s
economic stimulus package would not do much to kick-start the
country’s sluggish economy.
The country recently announced an economic blueprint
following figures that show the economy has entered a technical
"The economic effect of the stimulus plan is likely to be
limited, as it mostly consists of already committed public
"However, planned reforms, including on mining regulation and
utility pricing, will improve the business environment and
encourage investment," said the World Bank.
World Bank said it expects economic growth in sub-Saharan
Africa to pick up to 2.7 percent in this year from 2.3 percent
last year, barely above population growth.
"The region’s economic recovery continues but at a slower
pace than expected," the World Bank said.
Meanwhile, South Africa’s Reserve Bank deputy governor Daniel
Mminele said on Tuesday the consumer inflation of South Africa
could breach the 6 percent upper limit of Reserve Bank’s target
300 injured in South
Africa train collision
JOHANNESBURG South Africa (Xinhua)
-- At least 300 people were injured
after a train collision in Kempton Park of South Africa on
By 11:30 p.m., there were no fatalities.
"About 300 were injured, commuters suffered serious, but not
critical injuries," the Gauteng Metrorail spokesperson Lillian
Mofokeng said on Thursday night.
According to the Metrorail spokesperson, the train became
faulty and collided with another stationary train.
The injured commuters were sent to several local hospitals.
Meanwhile, the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa said an
inquiry would be set up to find out the cause of the accident
and promised to work with other agencies to look into the
"Metrorail technical teams will be working around the clock
to recover the site.
"The cost of the accident is still unknown at this stage,"
Some of the commuters proceeded to their destination on
another train which was made available.
In September, over 100 passengers were injured after a
collision between Metrorail’s two passenger trains in the south