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Govt plans jobs summit, says Ramaphosa

Jun 21 2016 20:03
Carien du Plessis

Pretoria - Government and labour are set to organise a summit to discuss ways to retain and create jobs in the tough current economic climate, Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa has said.

Following a meeting on Tuesday of the presidential working group on labour involving the Presidency, labour federation leaders and Cabinet ministers, Ramaphosa said a job summit would be held.

“The meeting felt that a job summit was needed. Labour called for a job summit, and as government we agreed there should be a job summit, so this will now be arranged,” he said.

Ramaphosa said a 10-person committee, consisting of ministers and two representatives each from the three largest labour federations, would arrange this job summit. “The job summit allows South Africans to have a conversation on the issue of jobs and how we can create jobs and growth in our economy,” he said.

Cosatu president Sdumo Dlamini, who attended the meeting, said the job summit would highlight what was being done to create a social security net for workers.

He said the last job summit was in 2003 and it was time to report back on what came out of it and which policies have worked and not.

Even though monthly salaries were a concern, there were other issues too, he said, like the new wage policy, social security measures and the national minimum wage. “We can say we have the wage system to protect those falling I the cracks of the economy,” said Dlamini.

“In addition to the minimum wage debate we are expanding this to form a security net in our country to ensure that at least the majority, if not all, is protected,” he said.

A date for the jobs summit hasn’t been set yet.

The three federations at the meeting submitted a 12-point plan on how to create more jobs and ensure job security for workers, as well as a range of proposed government interventions.

In their submission they said the buck stopped with the state to address the jobs crisis. “We don’t accept the view that it is not the business of government to create jobs, stop job loss or to drive a coherent jobs strategy,” they said.

unemployment  |  jobs  |  sa economy
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