Thousands of South African workers took to the streets yesterday in protest against job losses within the clothing and car production industries.

The one-day strike was organised by the Congress of South African Trade Unions (Cosatu) and was part of a string of demonstrations planned to take part this month.

Cosatu aims to raise awareness of unemployment and poverty and pressurise the government to stop the growing influx of cheap imports damaging the country's trade.

The group says the government is not doing enough to tackle unemployment and issues affecting trade, such as the increase in Chinese imports that has reportedly led to large-scale job losses within the textile industry.

According to officials, South Africa's unemployment rate is just over 26 per cent.

Protesters also expressed discontent over casual labour conditions and said they wanted their currency to be made more competitive.