Microsoft Launches New Jobs Drive For South Africans

Microsoft Launches New Jobs Drive For South Africans

Microsoft is partnering with the South African government to train 3,000 graduates and help them find them permanent information technology jobs in a country where 25 percent of workers are unemployed.

The software company will act as a link between universities and IT companies, approaching them to determine needed skills, according to a report in The Economic Times.

“We cannot let an entire generation of young people become long-term unemployed,” said Jean-Philippe Courtois, president of Microsoft International. 

Despite it being the continent’s largest and wealthiest economy, South Africa has chronic joblessness, the report says.

Jobless numbers are even worse when they include people who have given up looking work, with reportedly nearly 37 percent of South Africans unemployed.

Two years ago South Africa established a $900 million jobs fund to create at least 150,000 jobs by 2015. To date 20,000 new jobs have been created, according to The Economic Times.

Microsoft is investing $14.6 million for the 3,000 jobs it is targeting as part of its $75 million pan-African initiative.

“It is very clear for us as a company, if we want to be relevant, if we want to sustain our growth as a company, we have to work in partnership with many constituencies in Africa,” Courtois said.