South Africa’s greylisting by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), a global money laundering and terrorist financing watchdog, would stifle the country’s ability to do business globally, especially with EU members, says Youth Employment Service (YES) CEO Ravi Naidoo.
YES is a business-led collaboration that seeks groundbreaking ways, through innovation and technological best practice, to reignite the economy and give youth a dignified first chance.
Naidoo said that the greylisting, together with load shedding, would unfortunately also affect job creation.
He said studies showed that greylisting negatively affected capital flows into countries, with consequent effects on economic activity, growth and employment levels.
In response to a Business Report media enquiry, Naidoo said that the single biggest way to create jobs was to increase the country’s rate of economic growth.
“We must continue with structural reforms to fix the economy in areas such as energy, water, ease of doing business and reducing basic education drop-out rate. We must build on the positive work that has been started in Operation Vulindlela. In the interim, public employment programs and the repurposing of the Social Relief of Distress grant are effective mechanisms to cushion the economic challenges being faced,” he said.
Reacting to President Cyril Ramaphosa’s State of the Nation Address last month, Onyi Nwaneri, CEO of Afrika Tikkun Services (ATS), a division of Afrika Tikkun specialising in recruitment, training, placement, and corporate transformation, said increasing the number of employed people, especially young South Africans, was one of the keys to driving development.
Even so, Nwaneri said, there has been a pattern of the government saying the right things when it comes to providing this kind of support, but then for some or other reason, it often ends up not being able to fully realise its promises.
She said the country’s inability to provide a constant supply of electricity was such an example. Nwaneri said ATS has seen first-hand how job seekers struggle to get placed.
“SMMES have taken the brunt of power utility Eskom’s inability to supply electricity, as they have been unable to operate as a result of the blackouts. The impact of the blackouts on SMMES is not only detrimental to these businesses, but also severely caps job growth,” she said.
“Skills development initiatives have also been seriously affected as blackouts stall training programmes and make online learning almost impossible. For organisations like ATS, they have had to spend huge amounts of scarce funds on generator and diesel costs,” she said.