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Cape Town - The DA's economic strategy in the Western Cape must be questioned, ANC provincial legislature member Max Ozinsky said on Monday.
“Increasingly, the DA stands like a naked emperor, with its head and hands empty, in front of the people of the Western Cape,” he said.
“If the Western Cape is an example of what DA economic policy offers, workers should be very worried.”
Ozinsky said the recently released Quarterly Labour Force Survey showed a 1.7 percent decline in employment in the Western Cape between the first and second quarters of this year.
However, the national employment rate recorded a 0.2 percent increase in the same period, he said.
“This jobless growth which (premier Helen) Zille has brought to Cape Town and the Western Cape, is a key feature internationally of the kind of economic policies favoured by big business and formulated by the DA.”
Western Cape economic development MEC Alan Winde said on Monday the decline in jobs was largely felt in the agricultural sector, which was seasonal.
“A total of 33,000 jobs were added to the Western Cape economy in quarter one and 25,000 lost in quarter two. This happens every year due to the seasonal nature of the agricultural sector.”
The province's unemployment rate of 23.2 percent was still lower than the national average of 24.9 percent, he said.
“This is not enough, but it shows we are moving in the right direction.”
The MEC said job creation would improve only when impediments in the labour market were removed.
“Until such time as there is recognition that it is business that creates jobs rather than reliance on the public sector alone to do so, one is unlikely to see the kind of job creation needed to reduce unemployment meaningfully.” - Sapa