Minister Mildred Oliphant’s Address at the 2018 Jobs Summit

Minister Mildred Oliphant’s Address at the 2018 Jobs Summit

The 2018 Jobs Summit was held on 4 and 5 October at the Gallagher Estate Convention Centre in Johannesburg. Government, business, labour and community organisations came together over these two days to discuss job creation as well as the challenges faced by each social partner in the creation of jobs.

The South African Minister of Labour, Mildred Oliphant, gave an address at the event. During her address, she said that government, business, labour and community formations, should use this platform to identify solutions to jobs retention, and to identify job creation challenges and opportunities that each social partner can contribute towards.

“This summit has raised huge expectations among our people, and we dare not fail them. It is expected of us to come up with practical solutions and initiatives that are capable of being implemented immediately”, said Oliphant.

Oliphant said that she was optimistic that all of the Job Summit’s social partners, especially the youth, would use the Jobs Summit as an opportunity to share their ideas on how South Africa can better address the unemployment challenge.

Leading up to the summit, there were 5 Working Committees that developed the various interventions that are the cornerstone of the Jobs Summit Accord and Framework Agreement. The social partners were able to reach agreements on a range of issues, spanning the five key focus themes. These include theme specific interventions covering Economic Sector Specific Interventions, SMME Interventions, Inclusive Growth Interventions, Education and Skills Interventions and public and social interventions.

“The approach to this work was guided by not seeking to do too many things, but focus on key strategic areas that promise greater impact within the shortest possible time. To achieve these outcomes, it will require high levels of discipline from all of us and to provide leadership in instances of bottlenecks”, said Oliphant.

Business agrees that everything possible must be done to avoid retrenchments in the Private Sector. It recognises that there are routes back to health for struggling companies which do not require the retrenchment of workers, and that these options should be followed in the spirit of the Jobs Summit. It also recognises that companies bear the primary responsibility for initiating and implementing actions to avoid job losses.

The summit resolve to engage with Productivity SA and appropriate international development partners to develop and implement comprehensive interventions designed to divert firms to sustainable growth paths.