#Sopa2016: 200,000 jobs to be created in WC

Yesterday, Premier Helen Zille delivered her address, focusing largely on the economy & job creation.

Western Cape Premier Helen Zille delivered her State of the Province Address (Sopa) on 19 February 2016. Picture: Xolani Koyana/EWN.

CAPE TOWN - The Western Cape Government says it aims to create more than 200,000 jobs over the next three years.

In her State of the Province Address (Sopa) yesterday, Premier Helen Zille focused largely on the state of the economy and job creation.

She unveiled the province's plan to assist in revitalising the economy.

Zille claims since the Democratic Alliance (DA) took control of the Western Cape in 2009, the provincial government has created more than 200,000 job opportunities.

She says more jobs will be added through Project Khulisa, a provincial initiative aimed at speeding up economic growth through tourism and agriculture.

"The Tourism Sector today employs 200,000 people, with a Gross Value Add (GVA) of R17 billion to the provincial economy. Project Khulisa aims to add a further 120,000 jobs by 2019 under a high-growth scenario, increasing GVA by 65% to R28 billion."

The premier says a further 100,000 jobs will come through agri-processing ventures with the potential to increase the GVA to R26 billion a year.


Opposition parties in the Western Cape Legislature say they're disappointed by the premier's Sopa, saying it failed to address the housing crisis.

In her speech, Zille announced plans to build more than 3,000 residential units, business premises and schools in Pinelands.

"The site is 22 hectares in size, and is adjacent to the suburbs of Pinelands and Thornton, and surrounded by access to good public transport."

But African National Congress (ANC) caucus leader Khaya Magaxa says the provincial government has been lowering its housing targets.

"It's at the lowest now. It doesn't even comes close to the ANC target when we were in charge of this province. Every year we when we were in charge, we were improving our targets, each and every year."

The African Christian Democratic Party (ACDP)'s Ferlon Christians says Zille should provide full details of the province's plans.

"Be honest with people and frank with them. Tell them that we need to assist you and 3,000 houses are too little as the backlog is too long."

Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) MPL Bernard Joseph described the announcement as a "joke".

"She is doing this for political reasons for the 2016 elections. At an informal settlements in town, they can't even provide services to the informal settlement behind a nice hotel."