An Overview of Jobs in Botswana
The economic performance of Botswana improved throughout 2013, which has resulted in various employment opportunities for locals and expats. The GDP growth reached 5.4 percent in comparison to the 4.2 percent achieved in 2012, The African Economic Outlook report suggests. The country, however, is still struggling with some problems.
The uneven distribution of wealth and the still relatively high unemployment rate happen to be two of the most significant issues. Botswana is considered a middle-income country. The narrow economic structure is one of the factors that have a vast impact on Botswana’s job profile and the types of careers available. The mining sector is the one that provides the majority of the employment possibilities in the country. Diamonds are the commodity having a significant impact on the economy and the one that stands in the way of labor market diversification.
Most of the local workers are employed in the mining, vehicle production, textile and tourism sectors. Several recent developments are transforming the diamond mining industry in the country. For a start, the Diamond Training Company relocated from London to Botswana in 2013. The government also decided to keep some of the diamonds mined for local processing. These two factors are expected to turn Botswana into one of the big players on the diamond market in the near future. Ongoing reforms are also affecting the tourism sector. These are expected to increase the number of employment options available and to stimulate economic development. The strategies aim to enhance the competitiveness of the Botswana private sector, which will ultimately boost the number of employment opportunities. When it comes to minimum wages and employment, the government has recently announced the figures for 2013/2014.
The domestic services sector is the one featuring the lowest hourly wages. Individuals employed in this sector earn 2.7 Botswana pula per hour (0.28 US dollars). Individuals employed in construction, hotel catering, entertainment, manufacturing and distributive trade earn the most – 4.86 Botswana pula or 0.5 dollars per hour. The Botswana unemployment rate has changed significantly over the past few years . In 2006, 23.8 percent of the population had no job. The figure went down to 17.8 percent in 2012 but increased once again in January 2014. The unemployment rate in the beginning of the year was 20 percent. Though the government is working hard on economic reforms, there are still issues that need to be addressed. Botswana is slowly making progress and moving towards higher stability. Tourism is a sector that has significant growth potential and the same applies to the diamond mining sector.
Only time will tell whether the local government will get to introduce effective reforms, decrease the unemployment and address the social challenges that the country’s workforce is dealing with.