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Unemployment Statistics in South Africa – A 2022 3rd Quarter Review

Updated on Feb 17, 2023 5335 views
Unemployment Statistics in South Africa – A 2022 3rd Quarter Review

South Africa over the last decade has maintained her position as the most industrialized African economy with an index score of 0.8404, which is the closest to the global standard. 

Being Africa’s largest exporter of manufactured goods and the most important trading partner for its regional neighbours, South Africa is the only sub-saharan country to outperform other countries. 

Unemployment Rate in South Africa

General Unemployment Statistics Data South Africa

Despite this index score, the issue of unemployment still lurks around the South African economy. Although the unemployment rate moved down to 32.9% in the last quarter of 2022 as against its initial rate of 33.4%, the challenge of unemployment in the country is still one widely spread across the different provinces in the country. 

With the improvement in the rate, the country comes in third, just behind Namibia and Nigeria, on the list of countries with the highest unemployment rate globally. 

Based on Worldometer Elaboration of the United States data, South Africa currently has a population of 61million people, accounting for 0.76% of the world population, with 50.76% female compared to 49.24 male. 

However, statistics has also shown that the rate of unemployment is more common with females than males in the country. Currently, 35.10% of females in South Africa are unemployed, while 31% of males are unemployment. 


Unemployment Rate by Province

Unemployment also differs among provinces. Eastern Cape Town comes in first as the province with the highest rate of unemployment.  With a whopping rate of 42.4%, Eastern Cape Town tops the chart while Western Cape Town comes in last as the province with the lowest unemployment rate of 24.5%. 


Employment Rate by Occupation

Irrespective of the industralization of South Africa, the most employed workers in South Africa are those working in Elementary Services. This occupation includes simple and routine tasks which mainly require physical effort and easy-to-use hand held tools. Jobs like selling goods in streets and public places, taking care of all kinds of houses or buildings, washing windows and other glass surfaces of buildings, stocking vending machines or reading and emptying meters, driving animal-drawn vehicles or machinery etc. 

Amazingly, this occupation accounts for way above 3 million South Africans across different provinces. The high rate of this occupation owes its existence to the fact that these jobs do not require so much skill to perform, as some jobs make room for on-the-job training. 

Domestic workers in South Africa are the least employed, making it the occupation with the lowest employment rate. This is largely because domestic workers are the least paid workers in South Africa. In fact, they are paid substantially low amount of money compared to every other occupation. With this, a lot of persons are always personally discouraged from becoming domestic workers, irrespective of the fact that the job role requires little or no training. It is important to note however, that workers that provide electrical services are the highest earners in South Africa, while Trade workers are the lowest paid in the South African economy. 


Predictions are that the rate of unemployment in South Africa if not arrested, will grow up to 40% by 2030. To combat this, the South African government seeks to create more job opportunities in all the provinces. Targeting the youths, the jobs roles being created will revovle around technology, seeing that it has unarguably become the future of business.


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Staff Writer

This article was written and edited by a staff writer.

1 Comment(s)

  • Misgana Ermias
    Misgana Ermias Jan 26, 2023

    I am from Ethiopia.

    I have masters degree of statistics and economics.

    I have 1 year experiance in enumerator 

    contact me +251916539424

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