Unemployment Rate Soars in South Africa

According to the country's National Statistics Agency, the nation's unemployment rate has risen to levels last seen in 2008. 30.8% of South Africans are now unemployed. The statistics are mainly caused by the effects of Covid-19 on the economy, writes Evelyn Shumba for The Exchange. The country is currently battling to stabilize its economy on the back of falling commodity prices, an electricity crisis, as well as controlling corruption and mismanagement in key economic sectors. The crisis has been exacerbated by the fact that while the Temporary Employee/Employer Relief Scheme (TERS) would remain in place during the national state of disaster, applications were extended for only a month - from 15 September to 15 October - despite the government extending the state of disaster to 15 December.


Unemployed young men in Mamelodi, South Africa wait for an offer of casual labour next to businesses that are trading out of converted shipping containers (file photo).

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