Unemployment near crisis levels in South Africa

Discussion in 'Economics & Trade' started by kazenatsu, Aug 14, 2023.

  1. kazenatsu

    kazenatsu Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    Warnings about South Africa's unemployment rate, with anger rising and millions jobless

    South Africa's official unemployment rate of 33% is the highest in the world, even higher than other obvious places like Gaza and the West Bank, Djibouti and Kosovo. A United Nations report delivered to the South African government in July (2023) described the situation as a "ticking time bomb".


    Warnings about South Africa's unemployment rate, with anger rising and millions jobless, Associated Press, 8/14/2023

    South Africa used to be the only First World country on the African continent, from the mid-1960s to about 1990.

    The only country in Africa that had a higher GDP was Egypt, but that was only because Egypt had 6 times the population at that time.
    Today this is no longer the case.

    In the 80s, South Africa was in the news all the time. Today the media won't touch it.
     
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2023
  2. Pro_Line_FL

    Pro_Line_FL Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    They touch it as much as they touch other African countries. 5.5 million people were killed in Congo wars and the media barely mentioned it. No one cares.
     
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  3. kazenatsu

    kazenatsu Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    The media in the U.S. and Britain seemed to care in the 80s, it was all over the news.
    There were many Americans and Brittons who travelled to South Africa in the late 70s and early 80s for temporary job assignments for 1 or 2 years.
    Probably was the height of that country's prosperity. It almost came close to Australia, in the eyes of the rest of the world.
    But now, just another forgotten country in the African continent.


    To be fair, French is the main official language of the Congo, and it falls more under the French sphere of influence. Only 7% speak English in the eastern part of the country, and that percentage is much lower in the western interior part.
     
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2023
  4. Pro_Line_FL

    Pro_Line_FL Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    Sure, they used to rock the boat back in the day. It was a nuclear power, and they were fighting commies in Angola and Namibia, they had apartheid, etc Lot of stuff happening, but not so much anymore.
     
  5. kazenatsu

    kazenatsu Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    Question: What do you think the impact of immigration is?

    Immigration is a factor but it's a smaller factor in South Africa. From everything I have read, I get the impression that immigration may only be responsible for 7 to 14% of the problem. South Africa does have illegal immigrants who come from the even poorer countries of Botswana, Mozambique, and Zimbabwe (even though the unemployment levels are lower there). Of course with the very high unemployment levels, the ordinary South African people take a very negative view of illegal immigration, as you can imagine. (Although that doesn't necessarily translate into the government taking a hard line)

    Another small additional factor is that South Africa does contain two countries within it, Lesetho and Eswatni, which are really almost more like protectorates of South Africa. This is a legacy from when the White government created designated territory for the native tribes to live in, so the blacks would have their own nation. These territories have higher birth rates and people pour out of them to seek better opportunities in South Africa. If you choose to also count "immigration" coming from these territories, then maybe you could add another 2 or 3%.
    But many might not feel it is fair to count that as "immigration" since these countries were formed from nations native to South Africa, and even if they are officially independent countries, in many ways they are treated like South African domains.

    Before about 1987 to 1993, whites pretty much ran maybe 79% of the economy in SA, with "Coloureds" (a special racial-economic class consisting of mixed African and White ancestry who were kind of like a separate caste) accounting for another 9% of the economy, and Indian businesses accounting for another 4%.
    That is if the economy were measured by standard economic methods, but of course those methods are not entirely accurate. You could argue Black workers played a support role, enabling that level of white economic output. But probably around 35% of the Black population was mostly detached from the mainstream economy, either due to poverty and underemployment, or living in more remote tribal areas. (The official unemployment rate in SA in 1980 was still only 7%, though some estimate it at 9.3%)

    (These percentage numbers are not exact but help convey a sense of what the economy was like)


    After 1980, unemployment began gradually increasing. By the middle of 2001, unemployment had reached 26% but then mostly leveled off for the next 15 years, but then after that began to very slowly creep upwards again.


    Most all of the ancestors of the later white population were already in South Africa by 1910.

    Why do you think SA became the most industrialized nation in Africa?


    I did find this interesting tidbit in South African history:
    "The following year [1905], indentured Chinese labourers (who were repatriated to their country in 1907) were imported to work on the gold and diamond mines, with the consequence that Black workers' wages were further eroded."


    Some will claim the black-led government was the cause of unemployment going up, but that is only partially true or not entirely obvious from looking at the data.

    I would estimate, based on the data, that the new government might have only caused a 1.6% increase in the unemployment rate.
    (22.1% in 1993 , 23.7% in 2009 , 18 years later. Although international sanctions, internal worker strikes and widespread violence may have been causing the unemployment rate to rise before the new government took over)

    Around 2018, SA began implementing racial affirmative action rules surrounding corporate ownership. Coincidentally or not, the unemployment rate began rapidly shooting up within just 2 years after this, even though it had been on the very slow gradual increase before then.
    The new rules required that 50% of the equity in corporate ownership be owned by black persons. In reality, what this ended up meaning was that a very small minority of wealthy blacks, mostly just a handful of individuals, were able to buy up a large percentage of the corporate ownership. So ironically it had the unintentional consequence of further skewing the country's wealth distribution by concentrating it into a handful of billionaires, even though it created Black billionaires for the first time.
     
  6. Derideo_Te

    Derideo_Te Well-Known Member

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    The economic data from the Apartheid era in South Africa is of dubious value. The nation's wealth was in it's gold mines which were looted by the Colonialists and then by the RACIST all white Apartheid government. The only reason they surrendered power to the black majority was because they had emptied the mines and had borrowed heavily.

    So the black government inherited a GUTTED SHELL of a nation where income from the gold mines has all but vanished and they cannot invest in new black owned businesses because of the INHERITED national debt.

    Hardly surprising that white supremacists here in the USA would DELIBERATELY leave out all of the RELEVANT FACTS above when DENIGRATING a nation with a black majority.

    St Reagan and Leaky Dick Cheney were YUUUGE supporters of the RACIST Apartheid regime.

    Why this DISTRACTION about unemployment in Africa? Is it because Biden has RECORD LOW unemployment numbers as something he can tell voters when he is campaigning next year?

    And be careful where you tread next because there are IMPORTANT PARALLELS between the current CORRUPT former GOP and ANC presidents.
     
  7. kazenatsu

    kazenatsu Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    If the mines were really the source of the nation's wealth then we would expect SA would be doing wonderful today, at least as good as the old days, if not better.

    But you advance this theory that all the mines (and there wasn't just one) suddenly just ran out within a short period of time? (like around 20 or 25 years)

    Keep in mind mining has been going on in SA since at least the late 1800s.

    And even if you really do believe mining was the source of wealth and that has run out, that really suggests a "zero sum game" economics, doesn't it?

    I mean, it seems very inconsistent to argue this is the explanation for SA, but then try to argue that immigration will not have a negative economic impact in other countries. You see what I mean. There is some huge logical inconsistency there on your side. If you choose to be honest and think about it.


    That may be partially true, but the unemployment statistics didn't really seem to hugely change just as soon as the Black government came into power. I mean if we look at the data. So that does not support that idea.


    Many on the Left in this forum are telling us that debt doesn't matter. So which is it?
    You're going to try to blame getting into debt?

    Some news to you: Mining may be a significant sector of SA's economy, especially in the very early Twentieth Century, but by the 60s SA's economy was not just based primarily on mining.

    Right now mining accounts for 8% of the country's GDP. In 1980 it accounted for 21% of GDP.
    Some might argue much of that decrease has simply been due to mismanagement. As well as the growing population, twice as big in 2021 as it was in 1980.
     
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2023
  8. Pro_Line_FL

    Pro_Line_FL Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    France does not have any influence there, and it doesn't matter what language they speak. Until 1960 Congo was referred to as The Belgian Congo for a reason (not French Congo)

    Its not that they ran out, but currently they have to go as deep as 3 miles deep, and that makes production more expensive.

    Currently China is by far the #1 gold producer.

    It was actually Dick Cheney who coined that phrase. When he tool over in 2000, US was in position to pay odd most of the debt, but they decided to go the other way (borrow more)
     
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2023
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  9. kazenatsu

    kazenatsu Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    You are aware that French is the second official language of Belgium? Historically, this is a big part of the reason that Belgium is a separate country from the Netherlands.
    40% of the population of Belgium speaks French, and the southern half of the country mainly speaks French. In the past, French was the more dominant language in Belgium (back when France was a more dominant power in Europe). This is the reason that French is the official language the Congo.

    (In 1866, 20% of the population in the Brussels Capitol region spoke only French, 32% spoke only Dutch, and 47% spoke both languages.)
     
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2023
  10. Pro_Line_FL

    Pro_Line_FL Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    Yes, they speak French in Belgium (and Flemish), and Belgium (not France) colonized Congo until 1960, so how does it fall under French sphere of influence today?

    There is no French influence in Congo. They have killed 5.5 million of their people all on their own.
     
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2023
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  11. kazenatsu

    kazenatsu Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    Well, to be fair, the Congo kind of falls outside the normal category.
    But because the official language is French, it falls more under France's sphere of influence. About half of Africa has French as their official language and the other half has English as their official language (with a few smaller exceptions).

    The Belgian colonization of Congo began much earlier. French language was chosen because at the time that was the language of the educated and bourgeoisie in Belgium, seen as "the international language", since France was a more dominant economic power at that time.

    My point is only that there is reason for the English-speaking world to ignore the Congo, and leave it to the French-speaking world to worry about.
    Which is not the case with South Africa.
     
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2023
  12. Pro_Line_FL

    Pro_Line_FL Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    Only Zambia, South Africa, and Kenya have English as the official language, and if you ever travel to Kenya, you will learn that they speak Swahili, not English. Other countries, like Tanzania, have English as second official language, although hardly anyone actually speaks it. Those countries moved on from the colony days.

    In Congo, French is the official language and 51% of the people actually still speak it.

    7 million black South Africans speak English out of population of 59 million. The rest speak local languages.
     
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2023
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  13. kazenatsu

    kazenatsu Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    I think you're ignoring, missing, or losing track of the point I was trying to make.

    But English is the main official and international language in South Africa.
    If you excluded all the poor people in South Africa, probably the majority of the people speak it.

    It might be true that only 8% of the population speaks it in their homes, but the majority (86.1%) of Indian South Africans speak English as the first language in their home language, and over a third (35.9%) of whites (the other whites speak Afrikaans, a variation of Dutch). English is the main language in the big cities. English is the main international language and the language of commerce in South Africa.

    The majority of people in the big cities can at least understand English, even if they may not speak it very well.
     
    Last edited: Aug 16, 2023
  14. Derideo_Te

    Derideo_Te Well-Known Member

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    https://www.statssa.gov.za/?p=4252
    The QUALITY of the ORE has been declining steadily and no, the drop has NOTHING to with "mismanagement". Other factors such as gold mines opening elsewhere around the world also factored into this equation.

    Baseline, all of the EASY to remove gold was STOLEN by the Colonialists and Apartheid regime.

    The LOGICAL INCONSISTENCY is entirely YOURS because I NEVER made any such claim about IMMIGRATION.

    Too bad you are NOT honest enough to think about that yourself.


    The Apartheid regime was falling apart as their LIES were EXPOSED. They LIED about crime rates, housing, healthcare, education, and unemployment.

    Once the media starting publishing their own data the Apartheid regime was FORCED to publish FACTUAL data relating to things like unemployment.

    That is why there is a GRADUAL change rather than an ABRUPT one. There was a great deal of baked in RACISM in the Apartheid data that needed to weeded out after the ANC government took over. This is not something that happens overnight.

    As bad as it might seem at least the situation is being reported HONESTLY now with a media that DOES hold the government accountable.

    FFS! Apples and cumquats ALL you have left now?

    The US National Debt has NOTHING WHATSOEVER to do with the South African National Debt.

    "Some" being racist white supremacists?
     
  15. Derideo_Te

    Derideo_Te Well-Known Member

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    Wrong again!

    English is just ONE of ELEVEN official languages in South Africa.

    https://southafrica-info.com/arts-culture/11-languages-south-africa/

    [​IMG]
     
  16. kazenatsu

    kazenatsu Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    I think you're being silly. If you asked anyone in South Africa what the most official language is, what language is used in business and with the outside world, they would tell you English, without hesitation. It's true much of the overall population may not speak it the best, but all the wealthy and influential people speak it.
    South Africa has four major cities, and of those the only one where English is not the main language is Pretoria (where Afrikaans, a Dutch-white language that developed in that region is slightly more dominant).
     
    Last edited: Aug 17, 2023
  17. kazenatsu

    kazenatsu Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    You may not, but many other people on your side who share those views do.

    If that were really true, we should have seen a sudden change in the statistics the first 2 or 3 years after the Black government was voted in, which we do not.
    I don't think the data supports such a theory, but you're welcome to try to show that I'm wrong.
     
    Last edited: Aug 17, 2023
  18. Derideo_Te

    Derideo_Te Well-Known Member

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    Clearly YOU don't know ANYTHING at all about DATA and how it is agregated.

    When EVERYTHING the Apartheid government did was DICTATED by race it would take some considerable time BEFORE they got around to EXTERMINATING the procedures that DISTORTED the data being agregated.

    That isn't just a case of changing a heading on a spreadsheet but involves CHANGING all of the FORMS used throughout the government and DISTRIBUTING the NEW forms. Then the procedures of COLLATING the data also needed to change as did the means of ANALYSING and PRESENTING it in Official documents.

    But in YOUR world this just happens OVERNIGHT?

    Sad!
     
  19. kazenatsu

    kazenatsu Well-Known Member Past Donor

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    Sounds like you are making excuses.
     
  20. Derideo_Te

    Derideo_Te Well-Known Member

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    Wrong again, I have a lifetime of working with DATA so only one of us needs excuses and it isn't me.
     

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