President Jacob Zuma says that apartheid is to blame for the weak economic growth in South Africa, calling it “colonialism of a special type”.
This is according to French international news agency, AFP, citing an address by the president to reporters in Pretoria on Tuesday (11 August).
“Other countries in Africa never had a racially based economy…We are trying to address the legacy of apartheid, and it’s going to be with us a long time,” said Zuma.
“At the same time it (South Africa) must be competing with countries that never had such a challenge.”
South Africa’s economy grew by 1.5% in 2014, down from 2.2% in 2013, according to preliminary estimates of real gross domestic product (GDP) released by Stats SA.
Zuma admitted that power shortages in the country were also hindering economic growth, while unemployment remains a concern.
And despite slow growth globally, local economic growth is expected to increase to at least 3% over the next three years, the president said.
“[This is] because we expect the electricity constraints to ease,” he told reporters at the Union Buildings in Pretoria.
It was estimated that the electricity shortage was costing the economy one percentage point in economic growth.
“South Africa continues to be confronted by the challenge of electricity supply. Since the inception of the five point plan in December 2014, substantial progress has been made in resolving the energy crisis,” said Zuma.