Experts predict unemployment to remain stable … But bad news for graduates


In spite of registered weak activity in the domestic economy, economists have allayed fears over massive job losses in 2019 citing that the unemployment rate will remain stable.


However, this by no means speaks to the effect that new graduates will be significantly employed.


Says Simonis Storm Securities, “We observe a cool off on high expectations of layoffs in 2019 compared to the past four years, and rather respondents expecting employment to remain relatively stable. This is encouraging and perhaps showing some signs that we are bottoming economically.”


Namibia presently sits with a 34% unemployment rate which is already considered high and Simonis Storm Securities predict that new graduates will have fewer employment opportunities.


High unemployment, low economic growth, and high government debt levels have been anticipated to remain as some of the biggest challenges Namibia will face next year and 3-5years.


The economy is in dire need of foreign direct investments to jump-start growth which has been subnormal since 2016 (second quarter), but this will not come in large amounts, the firm also warns.


The experts also cite that for this financial year good leadership, accountability and employing those who are educated and capable are some of the factors that will drive efficiency and improve productivity in the public sector.


Corruption has also been cited as part of the problems that impacted the economy nearly bringing it to its knees and this, Simonis Storm highlights, needs harsh penalties to be imposed on offenders.


This should also be bolstered by, “transparent leadership, equal treatment, enforcing the law,” the firm advises.


Simonis Storm’s crystal ball also shows that debt levels will remain sustainable, there is no need for a bailout and that the fiscal position will bottom out in 2019 and return to normal from 2020.


All in all Namibian economic growth for 2019 is expected to remain in a lower gear if not in reverse, the firm predicts while inflation will be moderately high with interest rate upside risks.