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One of the major problems facing South Africa is unemployment – which is currently sitting at around 37%.  When looking at youth (18 – 35 years old) the unemployment rate is above 50%.  This is a ticking time-bomb waiting to go off, and must be disarmed.

On 29 March 2018 the Department of Trade and Industry (dti) proposed various amendments to the B-BBEE Codes of Good Practice.  One of these is the proposed Youth Employment Service (Y.E.S.) initiative, which is the product of the private sector engaging with government to find workable solutions.  Simplified, the Y.E.S. initiative enables up to two B-BBEE levels of enhanced B-BBEE status recognition if certain youth job creation targets are met.

What does this mean? Your business can play a meaningful role in strengthening the workforce through providing the life-changing opportunity for youth to build skills and gain experience.  While doing this, you can significantly improve your B-BBEE status, which strengthens your customer-value-proposition, and more strongly positions your company for future success in South Africa.

The extent to which you can boost your B-BBEE level is determined by the level of job creation against the prescribed targets, as well as subsequent absorption of those employees.  Eligible persons are Black (South African Coloured; Indian; African) youth aged between 18 and 35 years, with job creation targets effectively being linked to size of business.

Proposed pre-requisites for benefitting from the Y.E.S. initiative include maintaining or improving the level of B-BBEE compliance from the prior year; scoring full Skills Development points for the new proposed element addressing bursary spend; and either achieving all Priority Element sub-minimum targets, or achieving on average 50% of all Priority Element targets.

The proposed amendments to the Codes were open for public comment to the end of May 2018, and it is expected that official amendments to the Codes will include the Y.E.S. initiative.  I look forward to seeing the final gazetted form, and the impact that this fantastic initiative will have on future South Africa.

This article was written by Shaun Smit. Should you require more information on contracting services as well as our other service offerings, please do not hesitate to contact us.

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