A QUARTER of South Africa's unemployed have been looking for work for over five years, according to a survey released yesterday.
"The chances of finding work after being out of the workplace for more than five years, or perhaps having never worked, are likely to be slim in a labour market saturated with low and unskilled workers, but in need of experienced and skilled labour," SA Institute of Race Relations researcher Lucy Holborn said .
There were 4.5 million people classified as officially unemployed, because they would like to work and had been actively looking for jobs.
The figure did not include about 3.2 million discouraged job seekers.
"All of this suggests that there may be large numbers of people who are simply unemployable."
Solutions would need to include the provision of education and skills to provide a better match between what the labour market needed and what it was being supplied with.
"Relaxing labour regulations to reduce the cost and risk of hiring people could help dent levels of unemployment that have been persistently high... " said Holborn. – Sapa