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50 000 new jobs for youth a year, for five years, for Western Cape?

Published Dec 13, 2018

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Cape Town - Western Cape MEC for Economic Opportunities Beverley Schäfer wants to create 50 000 job opportunities for the youth every year, for the next five years.

"Youth unemployment in this country is too high," she said.

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"In the Western Cape, 33.9% of our population is between the ages of 15 and 34. And we have a youth unemployment rate of 30.35%.  And while this is well below the national average and we’ve made inroads in this province, recording a 5.1% decline in youth unemployment between 2012 and 2018, we need to be building linkages and pathways between government, the skills sector, and the private sector to ensure that were are creating opportunities for young people, in sectors where they are needed.

"We are building an economy for the future, and as such, our focus needs to be on preparing our young people to take their place in that economy, through skills development, and creating work opportunities," she said.

Schäfer said she would be exploring partnerships with businesses and organisations to maximise opportunities for young people.

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Beverley Schäfer. Picture: David Ritchie/African News Agency (ANA)

"By creating opportunities for young people, we’ll be tackling social problems like poverty and crime, and developing a young, skilled workforce that is attractive to overseas investors.

"Young people require our full attention- without them we don’t have a future workforce or a future economy. Our job as government is to stimulate the environment to ensure that these young people are employable. So I would like to set a target to decrease youth unemployment in this province over the next five years. We’ll be looking to create 250 000 opportunities over the next five years."

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Schäfer said that the Western Cape government is positioning itself to become a global tech hub and in order to do that, the province would require a wide range of skills.

@TheCapeArgus

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