KZN businesses in demand of skills, survey reveals
DURBAN - A survey conducted by the Moses Kotane Research Institute has revealed that businesses in KwaZulu-Natal are in demand of skills.
The survey was received by the KZN Provincial Command Council and deliberated upon during a virtual meeting chaired by Premier Sihle Zikalala.
The survey observed 2,402 businesses, both formal and informal, across all sectors and districts in the province. Sectors included agriculture, forestry and fisheries, mining and quarrying, manufacturing, utilities (gas, electricity and water), construction, transport and storage, finance, real estate and business, services (education and health), wholesale and retail, tourism and hospitality, and information communications and technology (ICT).
“There is a gap between current skills, skills demanded by business and skills for the future under each sector. The challenges experienced relate to the fact that academic institutions are lagging behind in catching up with the business world and labour market, and this skews the supply of skills demanded,” according to the survey.
It further revealed that the province lacks skills in the digital realm. “It is recommended that the province focus on the upskilling and upgrading of the workforce on information and communications technology.”
Zikalala commented in a statement on Thursday: “The province needs to look at the issue of drivers in addition to skills mentioned. In order to recalibrate the economy, KZN will therefore look at interventions to provide skills in targeted economic sectors and try to bridge the gap on skills.”
According to the report, the majority of the skills which businesses lack in the province are technical.
“Government will use this report to engage academic institutions through the Provincial Human Resource Development Council to influence the transformation of the curricula to respond to the skills required by industry to create jobs and also develop skills for the jobs of the future,” added Zikalala.
The council has also resolved to appoint a task team to investigate disruptions in service delivery in various parts of the province. The three districts are the Ugu, Newcastle and King Cetshwayo municipalities.
“The executive council is concerned about persistent service delivery disruptions plaguing these municipalities and their impact on the lives of residents and investors alike,” explained Zikalala.
African News Agency