South Africa and China to sign human resources and social security agreements

SEPTEMBER 11, 2014

Labour Minister Oliphant and PRC’s HR and Social Security Minister, Yin to cement friendship in human resources and social security

Labour Minister Mildred Oliphant will on Monday (September 15) on behalf of South Africa with her counterpart Human Resources and Social Security Minister, Yin Weimin of the People’s Republic of China, sign a co-operation agreement in the fields of human resource development and employment service.

The parties seek to co-operate in the following areas:

  • Strategies and programmes that would enhance the provision of employment services;
  • Strengthening of labour inspection services;
  • Social security (Unemployment Insurance and Compensation of Employees);
  • Employment programmes to meet the challenges of the labour market and globalisation;
  • Such other areas as may be agreed upon in writing by the parties.

The Chinese delegation led by Yin is expected to arrive in South Africa on Friday (September 12). Later in the day the visiting party is expected to meet with South Africa’s Minister of Social Development, Bathabile Dlamini. 

On Monday (September 15), Yin will meet Oliphant in Parliament Complex, 120 Plein Street in Committee Room 1 at 10:30AM  in  Cape Town. Their meeting will culminate in the signing of the Forms of co-operation agreement: on the exchange of visits at Ministerial level; the exchange visits by senior officials and study tour groups in specialised fields; the exchange of experts to undertake training courses and seminars; the exchange of materials on human resource development and employment services.

The co-operation will also extend on the exchange of employment programmes for gaining the necessary skills required by the globalised labour market, co-ordination of positions in international labour organisations and at regional and international fora.

Yin’s visit to South Africa follows Oliphant’s similar tour to PRC last August in which her itinerary included visits to Beijing's local Labour Inspection Bureau where she met with Yin to strengthen relations in areas of labour market and social security development.

The Oliphant-led delegation also visited the Tianjin Social Security Insurance Bureau, about 100 kilometres outside Beijing. The visit was about to get first-hand experience on how the municipality implements best practices in the field of social security benefits.

Oliphant was left raving by the seamless operations at the Tianjin City’s Social Security Service Center. The Minister witnessed how the Chinese’s Center was able to manage “one social security benefit scheme” using a single card for unemployment insurance, old age pensions, workmen’s compensation, medical scheme, foster grants, and maternity benefits among others.

Oliphant also paid a visit to the Public Employment Center in Haidian District in Beijing Municipality (the equivalent of what is called Public Employment Services) in South Africa. The Center provides employment services for unemployed people including the rural migrant. The unemployed, youth and disabled are provided an array of services ranging from placements, career guidance to training.

China and South Africa are also members of the Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa (BRICS) economic bloc.

Photo caption: South Africa's Labour Minister Mildred Oliphant and People's Republic of China Minister of Human Resources and Social Security Yin Weimin in Beijing on 28 August 2013 during a meeting to cement relations and enhance co-operation in public employment services, youth employment strategies, and on how to improve social security benefits.