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Govt, private sector must work together to reduce youth unemployment - Gordhan

Gordhan said government and the private sector must be leveraged to create jobs for young people.

Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan addressed a Progressive Professionals Forum in Vredenburg in the Western Cape on 08 April 2019. Picture: Cindy Archillies/EWN

CAPE TOWN - Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan on Friday said society should be concerned at the high levels of youth unemployment.

He was speaking at an eNCA breakfast on Friday following President Cyril Ramaphosa's State of the Nation Address on Thursday. Ramaphosa labelled the unemployment rate among young people as a "national crisis".

WATCH: Politicians react to Ramaphosa's Sona

Gordhan said government and the private sector must be leveraged to create jobs for young people.

“There is a huge determination to use both government facilities but also the private sector in order to make sure that the youth has confidence in our system. Both government and the private sector should actually deliver.”

Meanwhile, some political analysts believe Ramaphosa may be looking to China for advice on the country's development.

In his Sona address, Ramaphosa mentioned his conversations with Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, Naledi Pandor, Jessie Duarte and Chinese President Xi Jinping.

The group conversed about the dream of a new innovative city, a dream shared by Ramaphosa.

Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs Minister Dlamini-Zuma said: “It’s very realistic. Many countries build new cities all the time. So, it’s not something that is out of this world. It sounds like out of this world in South Africa because we haven’t built a new city and probably the people who are still alive today have not seen a new city being built.”

Analyst Shingai Mutizwa-Mangiza said Ramaphosa may have found inspiration.

He said: “He is looking at China as a sort of economic blueprint and South Africa’s position within the African continent. He sees South Africa as occupying a similar position. But I suspect there may be other issues globally as well.”

Meanwhile, analyst Josiah Nyanda said the address provided a sense of hope.

“What South Africa needs is solutions to the problems that South Africa is facing today and what’s missing in the president’s address is the how part. By and large, it is a speech that is full of promises and I think that at this point, South Africa needs to be optimistic and positive.”

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