Key Points:

  • Youth unemployment in South Africa is a human tragedy and a waste of economic potential. Finding ways to get young people into the formal economy is the only viable and sustainable way to improve the lives of millions of South Africans.
  • Policy makers must prioritise connecting young people to economic opportunities in the places where these opportunities can most easily be generated. The focus of interventions should be to make young people across the country more employable, more informed, and more mobile.
  • South Africa’s future is in its cities: to capitalise on urban-led and employment rich growth we need a better strategy for managing urbanisation and the development of our cities so that they become centres of hope and opportunity, especially for young people.
  • We need to expand opportunities for young people to acquire skills that will make them more employable.
  • South Africa has to achieve higher and more labour intensive growth in as many local areas as possible, as well as nationally. This is the only way our society will be able to create the numbers of jobs required to start turning the tide on the ever expanding unemployment crisis for young people.
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