When the sixth SA administration came into office in 2019 economic growth was stagnant at 0.1% and had averaged just 1.4% a year over the previous decade. Growth in the primary sector averaged 0.6% a year and 0.1% in the secondary sector. The services sector remained resilient at an average of 1.8%.

Economist Ricardo Hausmann and his co-authors attribute this stagnation to three factors: an external story, which includes the end of the commodity price boom; a macro story involving unsuccessful fiscal consolidation efforts after the global financial crisis and tightening monetary policy; and a microeconomic story involving tightening product and labour market regulations, mismanagement of state-owned companies (SOCs), the introduction of the new mining charter, and debates about expropriation of land without compensation...

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