Not all Doom & Gloom in South Africa!

South Africa needs growth that generates the kind of investment and technology transfer that will lead to long-term increases in economic development and the creation of higher-paying jobs—changes that will enable people to transform their lives.

Much has been accomplished in South Africa since the end of apartheid and the beginning of democracy 20 years ago.

This strong governing framework, as well as the establishment of institutions like the nation’s much-admired judiciary, has played a key role in creating a business climate conducive to the growth and expansion of multinational companies,

We can celebrate two decades of democracy thanks to the vision and wisdom of South Africa’s leadership.

Despite a history of racial inequality and civil protests, South Africa defied most expectations by negotiating a peaceful transition to full democracy and by setting the foundations for an inclusive society.

These services include access to primary and secondary education, expansion of primary healthcare, and provision of electricity and water.

Just as important, South Africa’s constitution has become an exemplar of inclusive governance with its clear emphasis on the socio-economic advancement of all South Africans.

South Africa’s leaders in government and the business community recognize that current growth patterns are not up to meeting the challenges of the future.

South African leaders are well aware of this challenge and have done the math; with roughly a doubling of per capita income growth, South Africa could achieve per capita income similar to that of Portugal or Poland in only 17 years. South Africans have set out their own vision for the next 20 years, in a way that is compelling and comprehensive.

But the structure of growth has remained largely reliant on commodity exports and mining, leaving the country vulnerable to external forces.

The country has surmounted tremendous obstacles, and I have no doubt that South Africa’s political leaders and citizenry will yet again rise to the challenge.

 

 

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source: This essay is one of 20 from the book Reimagining South Africa, edited by McKinsey & Company.

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