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South Africa has one of the largest pension systems in the world, but low savings continue to constrain growth, says Nthabiseng Moleko, a lecturer in managerial economics and statistics at the University of Stellenbosch Business School.
Moleko says unemployment and the working population’s spending habits have had a negative effect on the savings rate.
“Employee contributions to pension schemes have risen in South Africa, with significant growth in the number of South African pension funds from 2,771 funds in 1958 to 5,150 in 2014.
“South Africa’s pension fund [pool] of almost R4-trillion makes it the biggest system in Africa and the 11th biggest in the world, but the increase in pension assets over the years has not resulted in a higher domestic savings rate.”
She adds: “Increased deficits and the negative savings effect on national accounts can deplete the build-up of pension reserves, indicating that pension reform may simply redistribute assets but not increase savings or have...
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