The employment situation in Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) continues to give rise to grave concerns. With the exception of a short period immediately following Independence, when government services absorbed substantial numbers of nationals, the creation of new jobs has been inadequate in relation to the high growth of the population and the rapid expansion of the labour force. Inappropriate post-Independence economic policies, sometimes inspired by different forms of ‘African socialism’, unfavourable economic trends (e.g. declining commodity prices and increases in the price of oil) and adverse weather conditions, seriously constrained economic development in the 1970s and 1980s. Economic reforms undertaken during the 1990s led initially to the retrenchment of thousands of civil servants and massive lay-offs by parastatals and private companies. While economic growth has picked up somewhat in recent years, employment growth has not (‘jobless growth’), and certainly not enough relative to the rapid expansion of the labour force (ILO 1999, Fluitman 2001).


Informal Sector International Labour Organization Wage Employment Apprenticeship Training Informal Enterprise 
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Copyright information

© Springer 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • Hans Christiaan Haan
    • 1
  1. 1.Vrije UniversiteitAmsterdamThe Netherlands

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