Job creation at the centre of economic recovery plan: Ramaphosa

President Cyril Ramaphosa says the main focus of government’s economic recovery are on five key areas; the creation of jobs, the re-industrialisation of the economy, economic reforms, fighting crime and corruption and improving the capacity of the state.

Ramaphosa says the plan is guided by the vision 2030 of the National Development Plan and the programme that was outlined at the beginning of the sixth democratic administration.

The President was addressing a joint sitting of Parliament on government’s plan to get the economy back into a job-creating growth path following the national lockdown to curb the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19). South Africa was already in recession when the pandemic struck.

“The objectives of the plan are clear. Firstly, it is to create jobs, primarily through aggressive infrastructure investment and mass employment programmes. Secondly, to re-industrialise our economy; focusing on small businesses, growing them, and strengthening medium and large businesses. Thirdly, it is to accelerate economic reform. Fourthly, to fight crime and corruption. And fifthly, to increase the capability of the state,” Ramaphosa said.

Ramaphosa says government has committed R100 billion over the next three years to create jobs through public and social employment as the labour market recovers. The President says the economic recovery plan, known as the South African Economic Reconstruction and Recovery Plan, aims to create over 800 000 work opportunities in the immediate term.

More than 2 million people lost their jobs in the second quarter of 2020 as the economy contracted by 16.4%.

“We must get our people back into the jobs they lost in the pandemic. We are determined to create more employment opportunities for those who were unemployed before the pandemic or who had given up looking for work,” the President said.