Pretoria - South Africa’s official jobless rate rose to 25.7% of the labour force in the second quarter of 2011 from 25.0% in the first quarter, a report showed on Thursday.
The total number of unemployed people stood at 4.538 million in the three months to June from 4.364 million in the first quarter.
Mandla Maleka, economist at Eskom, said the rate was still "very high".
"It shows unemployment is not moving around the 25% number.That testifies to the structure of our economy, that we are not creating jobs in areas where we need to create jobs, in labour intensive sectors. This is now evidence to that.”
The government has singled out unemployment as a major challenge, after about a million jobs were lost in 2009 during the recession.
South Africa is proposing sweeping changes to labour laws intended to increase job security for temporary workers, but economists expect the shake-up will make unemployment worse and ramp up costs for employers.