East Cape set to take lead in job creation

[caption id="attachment_34795" align="alignright" width="405"] BIG BOOST: More jobs are expected in the tourism and hospitality sector. Here Wezandla gallery and craft centre's Natalie van der Merwe displays some of the artwork sold to tourists. Picture: FREDLIN ADRIAAN[/caption]

THINGS are looking up for job seekers in the Eastern Cape.

The third quarter employment outlook for the province predicts it will be the best employment performer in the country over the next three months, with a net employment outlook of 12% forecast by the Manpower Employment Outlook Survey.

The hiring climate for job seekers in Gauteng, KwaZulu-Natal and the Western Cape also looked rosy with a steady hiring pace of 11%.

The optimistic hiring prospects for the Eastern Cape are attributed to infrastructure development and investments in a basket of sectors, including tourism and agriculture.

Manpower SA managing director Lyndy van den Barselaar said the Eastern Cape had experienced a great degree of investment and infrastructure development, which should now start facilitating employment opportunities.

"With an economy that is driven mainly by the automotive industry, tourism, agriculture and import and export markets, the Eastern Cape has a basket of sectors that may influence further development and job creation.

"The agriculture, hunting, forestry and fishing industry has experienced growth both quarter- on-quarter and year-on-year, which could be contributing to the job growth within the sector.

"Tourism in the province is expected to increase further leading up to the Mandela International Film Festival, set to take place in the Nelson Mandela Bay area in December next year. The ramp up to this event could also be a contributing factor to the growth," Van den Barselaar said.

Nelson Mandela Bay Tourism chief executive Mandlakazi Skefile welcomed the results of the survey and said the Bay was an attractive destination with ample resources and opportunities available.

Nelson Mandela Bay Business Chamber chief executive Kevin Hustler said the chamber was encouraged by the indication of an improvement in employment prospects.

The Eastern Cape, along with the Western Cape, showed the strongest improvement year- on-year with the latest Manpower Employment Outlook Survey results and countrywide the net employment outlook is predicted to climb 8%.

This is the most optimistic forecast by the Manpower Group since the third quarter of 2010.

Van den Barselaar said the survey indicated employer confidence was growing stronger.

"This quarter's forecast is the strongest in four years." - Cindy Preller