HOMEMASS MEDIAXavier in the NewsGlobal Competitiveness: SA breaks into Top 50 – education, labour rock bottom
01 October 2015
Global Competitiveness: SA breaks into Top 50 – education, labour rock bottom
Mass media - News Sala i Martín

Tags: Competitiveness | South Africa | WorldEconomicForum

The first lesson in statistics, always beware of statistics. On the surface, South Africa jumping into the top 50 of the World Economic Forum’s Global Competitiveness Index is a positive move. But when one scratches into the report, it’s still a long slog ahead to make the country a world beater. South Africa claims last spot for 2 categories: labour-employee relations and the quality of its Maths and Science education, while it is only 2 spots better off in 138 for the overall quality of its education sector. The one bright spot, although the country has slipped out of the top 10, is the country’s financial market. And when compared against the other BRICS nations, South Africa sits in the middle, with Russia and China ahead. The report also signals some worrying trends globally – a ‘new normal’ of suppressed economic and productivity growth and persistently high unemployment. – Stuart Lowman


“The new normal of slow productivity growth poses a grave threat to the global economy and seriously impacts the world’s ability to tackle key challenges such as unemployment and income inequality. The best way to address this is for leaders to prioritize reform and investment in areas such as innovation and labour markets; this will free up entrepreneurial talent and allow human capital to flourish,” said Xavier Sala-i-Martin, Professor of Economics at Columbia University.


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