S.African economy sheds 48,000 jobs in March - CNBC Africa

S.African economy sheds 48,000 jobs in March

Southern Africa

by Trust Matsilele 0

S.Africa lost 48,000 jobs in March. PHOTO: Getty Images

According to Statistics South Africa, over 500,000 jobs were created last year and the March job indications suggest the country is losing on its 2013 gains. However, these statistics are not conclusively agreed across the industry.

“Stats SA does not have coherent numbers even within themselves for the same sector of the formal economy. This is ridiculous as we find ourselves in the situation similar to the Argentinian banks when they ended up producing their own statistics as government statistics had lost credibility,” Loane Sharp, labour analyst at Adcorp told CNBC Africa.

“More and more employment statistics are contested, people no longer take Stats SA figures seriously except for those who are in service of Stats SA,” he added.

The Statistics South Africa data is informed by revenue information and does not factor the informal sector.

The statistician general, Pali Lehohla is defiant, arguing that the Stats SA data is credible.


According to reports, unemployment figures now at 24 per cent could see an upset as the economy is set to lose more jobs especially in the mining sector due to the mechanisation initiatives meant to replace human labour force.

(WATCH VIDEO: Mechanisation in S. Africa's mining industry)

The mechanisation of jobs formely requiring labour force could put an end to the perennial strikes but will surely increase unemployment figures and further stretch the government's grand system.

Meanwhile, industry experts have urged the platinum mines companies to consider legal route to end the crisis.

(READ: S.Africa platinum talks resume in bid to end strike)

“The management has been terribly weak, they should extend litigation against trade unions for loss of earning due to worker intimidation. The Commission for Conciliation for Mediation and Arbitration and the ministry of labour should equally be charged for failure to promote peace in the labour sector,” said Sharp.

(WATCH VIDEO: The role of S.Africa's CCMA)

The ruling African National Congress has been accused of failing to mediate the ceaseless strikes due to the impending elections likely to have a bearing on voter turnout and attitudes in the platinum mines.