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South Africa: North West Invests in Skills Development for more Jobs and Productivity
Source: Issued by: North West Provincial Government
Source Date: Friday, March 15, 2013
Focus: E-Procurement
Country: South Africa
Created: Mar 15, 2013

The Premier highlighted that according to 2011 census report, the North West Province is a home to about 3.5. million inhabitants, and the economy in the province has grown at about 2.7 % which is miniscule given the 5.4 % needed by National Development Plan to create 11 million jobs by 2030. She said that the mining sector contributes 30% to the overall Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of the province with other sectors like manufacturing at 4.9 %, agriculture at 2 % and community service at 11.7 %.

Modise alluded that her province is faced with the predominantly poor population with high levels of dependency on social grants, uneven distribution of limited and available resources which inhibit service delivery and economic growth and also possibility of shedding of jobs by the mining sector.

“As part of our strategic plan to address these challenges the Provincial Government proposed building strong and enduring partnerships and to select from many possible interventions which hold promise of greatest possible, create jobs, improve efficiency and productivity, fairer distribution of economic opportunities and rewards,” she stressed.

She underscored that the province boast itself with strong agricultural sector, road transport network between SADC and other provinces such as Gauteng, Free State, Limpopo and Northern Cape and that BRICS will create opportunity for international markets in agriculture.

The Premier hinted that she is in negotiations with Minister of Minerals about the marble project in Taung to be given to Women in the Province. The Province will seize the opportunity brought about by climate change by introduction of several Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency initiatives and Manufacturing opportunities.

In her address, Minister Mildred Oliphant said the jobs summit and jobs fair is one of the initiatives that Government has embarked on to ease the lot of many people who find themselves not only jobless but also hopeless.

The Minister highlighted that the Job fair gave effect to government’s commitment in the struggle to ease the challenge of inequality, poverty and unemployment and that the summit was designed to help employers and potential employees to find each other.

“The focus of government is decent work hence we have set in motion process of amending critical areas of Legislation like Labour Relation and Basic Conditions of Employment. The Employment Services Bill and Employment equity Amendment Bill have also been submitted to Parliament. The Portfolio Committee has deliberated and voted on Basic Conditions of Employment and will be finalising the Labour Relations Bill. These legislation will make it difficult for situations that gave rise to Marikana,” she said.

MEC for Economic Development, Conservation, Environment and Tourism, Motlalepula Rosho focused the summit to key projects which are aimed at addressing development in the province such as Beef Beneficiation in Dr Ruth Segomotsi Mompati, Development of Electronic Sector Zone in Dr Kenneth Kaunda, Expansion of Tourism Sector through a deal with Peermont Group and the North West Hotel School and Platinum Beneficiation in Bojanala.

MEC Rosho said that while Tourism, Agriculture and Mining are top job drivers, the provincial government is in negotiations with Ireland, Thailand and Mozambique on issues of arts, hospitality and tourism opportunities for the Province.

Private Sector institutions such as National Empowerment Fund and industrial Development Corporation, South African Maritime Safety Authority presented to both the Minister, Premier and other stakeholders about their initiatives and urged Business and SMMEs to make use of available funding and support opportunities that creates jobs and alleviates poverty available from their institution.

The job summit which was hosted by the North West Provincial government in partnership with the Department of Labour was seen by many of the young people who attended it in numbers as an opportunity for them to find long lasting solution to unemployment and poverty.

Social partners in attendance committed to sustainable and practical declarations to create jobs for the young people. The summit was also characterized by a job fair which created opportunities for job seekers and unemployed graduates to meet with prospective employers and other institutions that can assist with their placement in different forms of employment or learning opportunities.
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