Statistics South Africa (Stats SA) has announced that employment in South Africa’s non-agricultural formal sector increase by 75,000 in third quarter of the year, in its latest Quarterly Employment Statistics (QES) bulletin.
The QES results – which are based on a sample survey – published on Tuesday, showed that the latest figures bring the total number of persons employed in the formal non-agricultural sector to approximately 9.6 million.
However, formal sector jobs decreased by 616,000 in the third quarter, year-on-year according to the report.
According to Stats SA, the increase in employment was due to gains in the trade (31,000), community services (26,000), construction (21,000) and manufacturing industries (8000).
Further employment losses were reported in the business services (7000), transport (5000) and mining industries (2000). The electricity industry reported no quarterly change in employment.
Annual employment losses in business services (163,000) and trade industries (162,000) were reported in September 2020 compared with September 2019, followed by the manufacturing industry (92,000), construction industry (80,000), community services industry (61,000) and transport industry (42,000).
Further annual losses in employment were reported by the mining industry (13,000). Moderate job losses were reported in the electricity industry (3000).
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Meanwhile, the Quarterly Labour Force Survey (QLFS) – which is separate from the QES bulletin – reported that South Africa had an official unemployment rate of 43.1% (7.5% increase) in the third quarter of 2020.
The results indicate large movements from the “other not economically active” category to “employed” and “unemployed” between the second and third quarters of 2020. The number of employed people increased by 543,000 (3.8%) to 14.7 million compared to the second quarter of 2020.