Today's Labour News

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newsBL Premium writes that the emigration of SA’s skilled professionals is a major risk for job-creation efforts and the dwindling tax base and cannot be ignored by policymakers as the country battles the aftermath of Covid-19 and one of the highest unemployment rates in the world.

On Tuesday, Izak Smit, CEO of the Professional Provident Society (PPS), a mutual financial services provider that offers insurance and investment products to graduate professionals, red-flagged the exodus of SA’s most skilled workers, who not only provide tax revenues but support jobs across the economy. Smit said that typically between 20% and 25% of professionals exiting PPS’s insurance business and the professional medical scheme Profmed, which PPS administers, cite emigration as their reason for doing so. Last year, across PPS’s life insurance business, which covers about 130,000 professionals, about 600 of the 2,500 members exiting listed emigration as a reason for leaving. The flight of professionals — some of the country’s highest income earners — is also bedevilling SA’s already stretched personal income tax base. In the past two financial years the number of taxpayers earning taxable income of R750,000 per year or more declined by about 9,000. Although there are other reasons for the decline, emigration is likely “a major cause”. There is some evidence of professionals returning to SA, but they were “very, very flexible” and it was not only negative factors that drove emigration but positive ones such as better career opportunities, Smit said.

  • Read the full original of the report in the above regard by Lynley Donnelly at BusinessLive (subscriber access only)

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