Pretoria: Business Unity South Africa (BUSA) has welcomed the latest national census results as an important statistical milestone.
South Africa’s third national census since the dawn of democracy in 1994 was conducted from 10 October to 31 October 2011. The census results were handed over to President Jacob Zuma by Statistician General Pali Lehohla on Tuesday.
BUSA, in a statement on Wednesday, said that it believed the national census provided an essential profile of demographic trends in South Africa and their socio-economic implications.
While the census identifies the progress made to date in socio-economic upliftment, it also confirmed the significant challenges that still remained in addressing unemployment, poverty and inequality.
BUSA said the census was a yardstick for both past and future achievements.
“BUSA therefore sees the outcome of the national census as a vital instrument for better planning and decision-making by both the public and private sectors.
“While the census may have confirmed certain socio-economic trends that have been apparent for some time, it more importantly provides a reliable base for proper planning and targeted development. In particular, SA’s young population emphasises the significance of education and youth employment schemes as policy priorities,” BUSA said.
According to BUSA, the census results put South Africa in a stronger position to move towards a shared vision for 2030, as outlined in the National Development Plan, based on the practicalities that need to be embedded in future decision-making by government and business alike.
It said the census confirmed why it was necessary to expedite the actions and processes that are necessary to concretise the vision that South Africa must now have for 2030 – and business remains committed to that outcome.