CAPE TOWN- The unemployment rate declined to 26.7% in the fourth quarter of 2017, according to the quarterly labour force survey released by Statistics South Africa (Stats SA) on Tuesday.
This means 5.9 million people are officially unemployed according to the Stats SA statistics but are actively looking for jobs.
The targeted unemployment rate by the National Development Plan (NDP) for 2020 is 12.7% points away from the 14% targeted according to statistician general Risenga Maluleke, who delivered the results in Pretoria. The NDP target for 2030 is 6%.
The NDP plan has target a 6% unemployment by 2030.
The expanded definition of unemployment by Stats SA are those aged between 15 and 64, who are not employed and are available for work – a total of 9.2 million people were unemployed, amounting to 36.3%.
Unemployment decreased 330 000.
The unemployment rate amongst women is 29% remains higher than their male counterparts at 24.8%. Black women remain most vulnerable, with figures at 30% of unemployment.
Education is still a main factor for employment, the lower level of education, the higher likelihood the job seeker will struggle to find a job.
The unemployment rate for those with less than matric is 31.2%, compared to graduates which is at 6.6%.
“You see education playing a critical role in labour markets,” said Stats SA general Risenge Maluleke.
“Young people aged 15-24 remain vulnerable in the labour market with the unemployment rate of over 52% and absorption rate of almost 13%,” he said.
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