At every State Of The Nation address in South Africa, and I am certain this applies to other African countries too, the president makes one promise or another about how the government is going to create jobs. However, when you check back a year later, none of these promises have been fulfilled, nor have any permanent jobs been created.

At best, what you find, and what is reported back as jobs created, are temporary jobs that typically last a few months and are specific to a single project. As such, I just think governments should be bothering themselves with trying to create jobs, they should rather leave that up to private companies.

Amazon is about to put a smile on 3,000 South Africans who will be permanently hired in their Customer Service division during 2020. They will work remotely to help clients in North America and Europe. This is in addition to the 4,000 people Amazon already hires in South Africa. This is how you create jobs.

In my humble opinion, it is not sustainable for any government to try and create jobs because at the end of the day this just creates a bloated public service. Also, these will likely be jobs that don’t contribute to the growth of the economy because governments are not meant to be profit-generating entities but rather deliver public services for citizens.

However, I do believe governments do play a critical role in this job creation process. That is, they need to create an environment that makes it easy for companies to employ people but simultaneously balancing that with protecting the rights of employees. Once that is done, policy makers need to get out the way.

Quote of the day

β€œWe are thrilled with the talent in South Africa and we are excited to add 3,000 skilled jobs this year in Customer Service, and to help keep people working during this unprecedented time.β€œ - Andrew Raichlin, Amazon (Tweet this)

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