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Growth path too vague on jobs: analyst

Jan 26 2011 10:45 I-Net Bridge

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Johannesburg - The  government's new growth path provides "very little" guidance on the actual process of creating jobs within the sectors it has identified as job creating, said Rudolf Gouws, an economic consultant with Rand Merchant Bank, on Wednesday.

Gouws was addressing the Gordon Institute of Business Science's Economic Outlook 2011 conference.

The growth path, released late in 2010 and still under discussion, counts among its aims the goal of creating five million jobs by 2020 by focusing on sectors such as manufacturing.

It also calls for loose monetary policy and the capping of wage increases.

"It is not a growth strategy," Gouws said. "There's little recognition that a sustainable job is one that adds value and generates a return on capital."

The framework has also been criticised for its proposals on labour. A few amendments are currently being made to labour laws in the country.

"Wages (are) linked to inflation and not productivity, which is clearly a problem. Labour legislation is labour friendly but not employment friendly," Gouws noted.

The focus on the labour sector in SA is falling on labour brokers. Unions accuse the sector of exploiting workers, while those who advocate for the practice say it is helping to create employment for thousands.

On global recovery, Gouws said it would take a square root shape.

"There's a limit to the extent to which it (the global economy) can recover. The global economy is in a sense operating without a safety net," he concluded.
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