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Shining a light on local content

15 December 2011
Last week, the amendments to the Preferential Procurement Policy Framework Act (PPPFA) came into effect. The new amended Act gives the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) the power to cherry-pick certain sectors and products within the South African economy for special privileges. More specifically, states the Act, “An organ…

Labour: Time for government to start listening

17 November 2011
The FMF published an article more than a year ago saying that it was crisis time in South Africa. The country’s greatest crisis lies in the large-scale unemployment that is causing havoc in the lives of millions of people. The situation has not improved. In fact, it is being made…

Iniquity of Labour Laws Today and the Land Act in 1913

09 Nov 11   Eustace Davie
It is a different time and we have a different government but history in this country is being repeated. Labour law in South Africa today is wreaking the same havoc on the millions of unemployed as the 1913 Land Act did on black sharecroppers. Like those victims of the past,…

Unemployed versus Unions: Getting the Priorities Right

09 Sep 11  
More than 6 million South Africans are unemployed and unionised members are becoming more cautious about their union engagement. Union membership is on the decline, and this trend has been exacerbated by the decline in the labour market, which according to Stats SA lost 191,000 jobs since the global recession…

Jobs, jobs, jobs? then denationalise the unemployed

01 Jul 11   Eustace Davie
At the stroke of a pen, 5-million more people could enter the workforce today. Current legislative and regulatory barriers prevent employers – from the largest to the smallest – from employing labour by mutual agreement. Because of this, more than 7-million people are being denied entry into the labour market. The…

State can’t afford public sector demands – Gordhan

20 May 11   FMF Policy Bulletin
SA's Finance Minister, Pravin Gordhan on Monday said the government could not afford to pay for the 9% wage hike that the country's public servants are demanding. He said this was because tax revenue has not recovered post-recession. "We are still recovering from the recession. Our tax revenue hasn’t gone…

Factories shut over minimum pay row

11 May 11   Jasson Urbach
Edward West reports in the Business Day (Factories shut over minimum pay row, May 4, 2011) that, the National Bargaining Council for the Clothing Manufacturing Industry recently closed two factories in Newcastle, KwaZulu-Natal, in an effort to force employers to pay government legislated minimum wages. West reports, “South African Clothing…

Employment

29 Apr 11   FMF Policy Bulletin
Andrew Kenny writes in the Business Day (Employment, Apr. 19, 2011), “Between our catastrophic levels of unemployment and the prospect of an economy with full employment stands the impenetrable barrier of our labour laws. These wicked laws are not only throwing millions of our people into the dustbin of joblessness,…

Clothes factories threaten closure

07 Apr 11   FMF Policy Bulletin
According to Edward West from the Business Day (Clothes factories threaten closure, Mar. 30, 2011), “The national bargaining council for the clothing industry says it will take legal action against manufacturers that have not complied with Friday’s deadline to pay 70% of minimum wage levels to employees”. Meanwhile employers in…

Proposed anti-labour legislation

02 Feb 11   Jasson Urbach
If the South African government wishes to resolve this country’s unemployment problem, it must allow citizens to be adults and to have the freedom to negotiate their own terms of employment. Legislating people into employment cannot solve the unemployment problem. If the proposed amendments announced by newly appointed Minister of…

Hands-Off Policy to Solve the Unemployment Problem

28 Jan 11   Eustace Davie
Strange things happen in this mysterious world of ours and nothing is stranger than the mass unemployment we have in South Africa. In a normal economy, in which people decide for themselves for whom to work or not work, or who to employ or not employ, people seem to sort…

Disorganising Labour: Banning Strikes by Government Employees

27 Jan 11   FMF Policy Bulletin
Kevin Hassett, an adviser to both George W. Bush and Sen. John McCain, speculated that in the snowplough slowdown, Americans may have had their first taste of government workers shutting down cities, states and even countries when things do not go their way. The delay of snowstorm cleanup by the…

Governments: Beware the errors of the 1930’s Great Depression

09 Jan 11   Eustace Davie
“Old myths never die; they just keep showing up in college economics and political science textbooks” wrote Lawrence W. Reed in his August, 1998 article Great Myths of the Great Depression. It is no surprise to learn that one of those myths is that “unfettered free enterprise” was the supposed…

Welcome to The World of Work

07 Jan 11   Jasson Urbach
How encouraging it is to see the improvement in the pass rates of the matrics and the wonderful results many of the students managed to achieve. The challenge now facing those who have graduated from school learner to work seeker is to find a job. A job that is satisfying…