South Africa is a middle-income, emerging market with an abundant supply of natural resources; well-developed financial, legal, communications, energy, and transport sectors; a stock exchange that ranks among the 10 largest in the world; and a modern infrastructure supporting an efficient distribution of goods to major urban centres throughout the region. However, growth has not been strong enough to lower South Africa's high unemployment rate; and daunting economic problems remain from the apartheid era, especially poverty and lack of economic empowerment among the disadvantaged groups. South African economic policy is fiscally conservative, but pragmatic, focusing on targeting inflation and liberalizing trade as means to increase job growth and household income.

Industry: mining (world's largest producer of platinum, gold, chromium), automobile assembly, metalworking, machinery, textiles, iron and steel, chemicals, fertilizer, foodstuffs, commercial ship repair

Agriculture products: corn, wheat, sugarcane, fruits, vegetables; beef, poultry, mutton, wool, dairy products

Key Facts

GDP per capita - $10,600
Inflation Rate - 8,8%
Country Risk Ratings - A3
Ease of Doing Business - 32/181
Global Competitiveness - 45/134

GDP growth:

1999 – 2.4%
2000 – 4.2%
2001 – 2.7%
2002 – 3.7%
2003 – 3.1%
2004 – 4.9%
2005 – 5%
2006 – 5.4%
2007 – 5.1%
2008 – 3.1%

GDP by sectors:

Agriculture: 3.4%
Industry: 31.3%
Services: 65.3%

South Africa's inflation rate

1993 – 11.7%
1995 – 8%
1997 – 8.7%
1999 – 6.9%
2001 – 6.6%
2003 – 6.8%
2005 – 3.9%
2007 – 6.5%
2008 - 8.8%

Fiscal year – 1 April to 31 March

Debt external: $39,69 million

Industrial production growth rate: 3.8%

Population – 47.8 million

79.5% Black
8.9% Coloured
9.2% White
2.5% Asian

Ranked in terms of GDP – 32nd in the world

Population under poverty line – 50%

Unemployment rate – 23%

Labour force by sector: agriculture – 30%, industry – 25%, services – 45%

Labour force – 18.2 million economically active

Electricity production - 228.3 billion kWh

Electricity consumption: 241.4 billion kWh

Electricity export: 13.4 billion kWh

Electricity import: 11.08 billion kWh

Oil - production: 217,400 bbl/day

Oil - consumption: 497,000 bbl/day

Oil – reserve: 7.84 million bbl

Natural gas - production: 2.11 billion m3

Natural gas - consumption: 2.11 billion m3

Natural gas – reserve: 27.16 billion ΠΌ3

Export: $41.97 billion

Export commodities: gold, diamonds, platinum, other minerals and materials, machines and equipment

Export partners:
USA 10.2%
UK 9.2%
Japan 9%
Germany 7.1%
Netherlands 4%

Import: $39.42 billion

Import commodities: machines and equipment, chemicals, petroleum products, science equipment, foodstuff.

Import partners:
Germany 14.2%
USA 8.5%
China 7.5%
Japan 6.9%
UK 6.9%
France 6%
OAE 5.6%
Iran 5%

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