Quarterly statistics released by Statistics South Africa (Stats SA) shows that fifteen thousand jobs were lost in the first quarter of 2016.
The information is detailed in the recent Stats SA’s quarterly employment survey, which shows that the job losses touched all sectors of the economy.
The survey shows employment decreased in all sectors except in community services and construction. This sector conquered the economic setbacks and recorded increases in jobs between the last quarter of 2015 and the first quarter of 2016.
Changes were not recorded in employment levels in the electricity, gas and water supply industries. but, employment in mining has declined for the sixth consecutive quarter.
Sadly, the survey depicts a decline of 0.2% in the formal employment of South Africa’s economy.
In line with the job losses, gross earnings also declined by 4% during the quarter from over R545 million to just over R523 million.
According to Statistician-General of South Africa, Dr Pali Lehohla this is a cause for alarm.
“Policymakers have to be concerned about this and see how to invest, how they deal with unemployment because 8 million people [are] unemployed in the country.”
He added that the mining sector has seen a significant number of job losses, with 4,000 job losses this year.
“With relation to earning earnings lost, it’s R22 billion. The first quarter numbers in retail are usually cyclical with numbers declining in retail, but when they decline in manufacturing, it is a serious loss of jobs.”
Stats SA says with about 5 million people unable to find a job, majority of young people in the country remain unemployed. Lehohla emphasized on the fact that majority of jobless people are black.
A community survey for 2016 was released by Stats SA last week. The survey revealed that the country’s population increased to 55.7 million people since the last census.