South Africa’s National Planning Commission has revealed that the country is on track to miss almost all of its 2030 development targets, as outlined in the National Development Plan set over a decade ago.
- Out of the nine targets set, five measures have deteriorated, one remains unchanged, and only three have shown improvement. However, even among the improved targets, only one is ahead of the set goal.
- The commission highlights stagnating economic growth, constrained investment, declining employment rates relative to population growth, and persistent poverty and inequality as key challenges. It emphasizes the need for closer collaboration between the state and the private sector.
- The commission was established to advise the president and cabinet on long-term development goals, aiming to address historical inequalities and challenges stemming from apartheid.
- While South Africa made significant progress in economic growth and reducing unemployment between 2000 and 2008, much of that progress was undone during President Jacob Zuma’s nine-year tenure, which ended in 2018. The government estimates that approximately R500 billion was misappropriated during this period.
- The report highlights the country’s failure to achieve targets in crucial areas such as economic growth, unemployment rates, and investment levels. However, there has been some progress in increasing the labor force participation rate.
- South Africa continues to grapple with high levels of inequality, as indicated by the Gini coefficient, which has remained stagnant and above the targeted level. The country is recognized as the most unequal in the world, according to the World Inequality Lab backed by economist Thomas Piketty.