Even as South Africa slowly emerges from the suffocating economic grip of the Covid-19 pandemic, lately launched employment statistics continue to make for grim reading, with practically eight million individuals unemployed.
South Africa really recorded improved financial activity in the fourth quarter of 2021, together with an expansion in real GDP of 1.2% in comparability with the earlier quarter, but unemployment nonetheless reached record levels.
Denice Dumisa

According to the Quarterly Labour Force Survey (QLFS), unemployment in Q4 final yr rose to 35.3% from 34.9% in the previous quarter. This is the highest degree because the begin of the Quarterly Labour Force Survey in 2008.
Even more alarmingly, the youth unemployment fee stood at a staggering 65.5%.
The latest employment data was released on the finish of March by Statistics South Africa (Stats SA), and came simply days after South Africa managed to attract R1.2 trillion in investment during the fourth South Africa Investment Conference.
Analysts have described the country’s financial system as “producing jobless growth” and imagine that even with upward financial progress within the medium term, South Africa will nonetheless have an overall unemployment figure of round 30%.
Youth unemployment is a global issue, even more acutely pronounced in South Africa, where the latest figures are sounding crucial alarm bells.
In late 2021, Stats SA reported that two out of each three younger folks underneath the age of 35 in South Africa are unemployed. For the age cohort under 25, this rises to 3 out of every 4, or a jarring 75%.
But in and amongst the dire unemployment statistics there are rays of sunshine on tips on how to start to effectively address this socio-economic disaster.
Education is vital

According to the QLFS report, of the 7,9 million unemployed individuals in the fourth quarter of 2021, as many as fifty one,6% had education ranges under matric.
This number of unemployed drops the upper the training level. Those with a Matric pass represent 38.6% of unemployed and this figure drops substantially for those with different tertiary qualifications (6.9%) and graduates who represent only 2.4% of South Africa’s formal unemployed.
Astron Energy’s Organisational Capability, Learning and Development Manager Lindiwe Ncongwane stated: “It is an typically repeated mantra that schooling is the necessary thing to success, however the labour force survey certainly bears this out.
“Education allied to alternative is the golden key to breaking this cycle of unemployment and to create a future for young individuals in the nation.”

Astron Energy, which operates South Africa’s second largest network of retail sites together with the Caltex brand, runs a number of Youth Development Programmes covering both tutorial assist and office and experiential studying opportunities.
Astron Energy’s Youth Development Programmes include:




Graduate Internship Programme


According to Ncongwane, South African Corporates have a key position to play in offering opportunities for graduates and those with other qualifications to assist reduce the number of unemployed, and in addition to assist construct a technology of employable young people.
“Investments in coaching and expertise growth, allied to education qualifications, will assist build a workforce that is multi-skilled and in a place to adapt to a mess of tasks and industries,” she stated.
เกจวัดแรงดันปั๊มลม of Work report by the World Economic Forum (WEF) discovered that 50% of all workers will need reskilling by 2025 as adoption of expertise increases.
The report also listed critical thinking and problem-solving as leading abilities employers consider will be wanted over the following five years, whereas newer tendencies centre on self-management skills corresponding to energetic learning, resilience, stress tolerance and suppleness.
According to Ncongwane, a key part of Astron Energy’s focus is to equip younger individuals for the world of work, not only at Astron Energy and the petrochemical industry, but the across a range of disciplines to enable them to be globally competitive.
The company also runs a number of school-level initiatives in the STEM house, but in line with the 4th Industrial Revolution’s concentrate on the 3Cs of Communication, Critical considering and Collaboration, has broadened this to STEAM – Science, Technology, Arts and Maths – in a bid to develop problem-solving and process-based studying.
The means ahead

“As a country, we now have to continue investing within the education of our younger individuals, particularly within the crucial skills area, and then create alternatives for them to apply these expertise and develop in office environments,” Ncongwane said.
“As corporates we want to design a range of programmes and initiatives to meet not solely the wants of the enterprise, but additionally the means ahead for work – and critically the lengthy run employment prospects for our younger folks.
“If we do that proper, we will begin altering the outlook on the employment entrance and make certain that financial development has a tangible impression on the futures and livelihoods of the generations to come.”

In the Youth Development space, Astron Energy runs the next programmes:

8 X Learnerships in chemical operations at the Astron Energy refinery in Milnerton, Cape Town

20 X Learnerships in Sales and New Venture Creation at Johannesburg workplaces

The Learnerships run from 1 Oct 2021 – 30 Sep 2022


Astron Energy runs a full Bursary programme which covers both beneath graduate and submit graduate research, from 1st year to Masters Level students.
The bursaries embody tuition charges, lodging, books, meals, money allowances and trip work within the form of internship/in-service-training within the company’s operations.
The programme started in 2020 and to date over 440 college students have been funded.
There are presently 196 scholar bursars and 15 worker bursars as a half of this programme. A complete of 26 employee children are a half of the bursary programme for 2022.
The bursary covers a variety of research fields this year including:
BSc: Chemical Engineering/ BSc: Industrial Engineering/ BSC: Property Studies/ Masters: Industrial Psychology/ Honours: Financial Accounting/ Bcom: Economics/ BSc: Electrical Engineering/ Bcom/BA: Human Resources Management/ Bcom: Information Technology/ Bcom: Internal Auditing/ Bcom: Logistics/ Occupational Health and Safety/ Bcom: Supply Chain/ BSc: Analytical Chemistry.
Astron Energy additionally provides successful bursars the opportunity to be a half of the Astron Energy Graduate Training programme.

Astron Energy provides 24-month Apprenticeships in Electrical and Mechanical Engineering and Instrumentation at the refinery in Cape Town. At present, the corporate has six apprenticeships in its manufacturing division.
Graduate Programme

The Graduate Internship Programme is run according to the varied disciplines required by the enterprise and runs for a period of between 18-24 months. The present consumption of Graduate interns is set to end on 31 December 2022.

Astron Energy at present has 77 individuals in its Learnership, Apprenticeship and Graduate Internship programmes:
LogisticsGraduate Internship13

CFOGraduate Internship11

RetailGraduate Internship5

HRGraduate Internship3


C & IGraduate Internship2

CEOGraduate Internship2

ManufacturingGraduate Internship1

STOGraduate Internship3

Strategy Graduate Internship2

SHEQGraduate Internship1


ManufacturingChemical Operations Learnership8



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