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Despite Progress, Things Have Not Gone as Well as They Might Have - An Excerpt from How South Africa Works

How South Africa WorksHow South Africa Works: And Must Do Better by Greg Mills and Jeffrey Herbst takes a look at what this country needs to do in order to spark growth and reform in its economy.

Rand Daily Mail recently shared an excerpt from the book, in which the authors look at unemployment in South Africa. This is an important problem for a number of reasons, most importantly because the ratio of employed to unemployed people is shrinking and the proportions of government spending that goes into subsidies “have strained a narrow tax base”.

It is in the ANC’s best interests, the authors write, to address this problem as efficiently as possible.

Read the excerpt:

There is much to celebrate from the last 21 years in South Africa.

The systematic, legislated exclusion of the majority of South Africans from sharing the country’s wealth resulted in one of the most highly unequal societies world-wide, where race largely determined life chances. There have been notable improvements in access to education, to public health clinics, and to electricity and clean, piped water. All of these efforts are reflected in absolute poverty levels: only 11 per cent of South Africans experienced hunger in 2011, for example, down from a quarter of the population just 10 years earlier.

Yet, for all of the above progress, things have not gone as well as they might have.

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