Sep 18, 2012
SA ranks higher in latest economic freedom reportBack
Africa|Industrial|SECURITY|System|Africa|Angola|Australia|Bahrain|Brazil|Canada|Chile|China|Finland|India|Mauritius|Myanmar|New Zealand|Republic Of Congo|Russia|Singapore|South Africa|Switzerland|United States|Venezuela|Zimbabwe|Fraser Institute|Fred McMahon|Leon Louw|The World
© Reuse this
The Free Market Foundation executive director Leon Louw said that the outlook for South Africa seemed positive and that the higher ranking indicated a return to the economic freedom seen in the first decade of the transition to democracy.
Economic freedom as defined in the report comprised, besides others, personal choice, voluntary exchange, freedom to compete and security of property, and the countries surveyed were ranked across five variables.
South African earned an overall score of 6.75, up from 6.49 in 2011. In the individual categories, the country scored 5.52, up from 5.02 in 2011, for the size of its government, while South Africa’s legal system and property rights score jumped from 5.44 to 5.70.
The country scored 8.18, a rise from 7.92 last year, for its access to sound money. Its score for the regulation of credit, labour and business category increased from 7.10 to 7.21. The freedom to trade internationally rose from a score of 6.95, to 7.16 in 2012.
Meanwhile, Russia, Brazil, China and India – South Africa’s Brics counterparts – ranked at 95, 105, 107 and 111 respectively, for economic freedom.
Hong Kong topped the rankings with a score of 8.9, followed by Singapore at 8.69, New Zealand at 8.36, and Switzerland at 8.24.
Australia and Canada achieved scores of 7.97, both ranking at fifth place. Bahrain, Mauritius, Chile and Finland also ranked in the top ten freest economies.
The US, which the Fraser Institute says was long considered the standard bearer for economic freedom among large industrial nations, fell to its lowest ranking at 18, after achieving tenth place in 2008 and second place in 2002.
“The US, like many nations, embraced heavy-handed regulations and extensive overspending in response to the global recession and debt crises. Consequently, its level of economic freedom has dropped,” Fraser Institute VP of international policy research Fred McMahon said.
Venezuela ranked the lowest, with the least economic freedom, with Myanmar, Zimbabwe, the Republic of Congo and Angola in the bottom five.
Louw commented that countries with high levels of economic freedom had greater prosperity and more political and civil liberty, while the lowest-ranking countries offered a lower quality of life for citizens.
The report pointed out that the nations in the top quartile of economic freedom had an average per-capita gross domestic production of $37 691 in 2010, compared with $5 188 for the bottom quartile nations.
The highest-ranked countries’ poorest 10% had an average income of $11 382, compared with an $1 209 in economically unfree countries.
The life expectancy in the top quartile is also higher than that of the bottom quartile at 79.5 years, compared with 61.6 years.
Edited by: Mariaan Webb© Reuse this Comment Guidelines (150 word limit)
Other Economy News
Recent Research Reports
Steel 2015: A review of South Africa's steel sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Steel 2015 report provides an overview of the key developments in the global steel industry and particularly of South Africa’s steel sector over the past year, including details of production and consumption, as well as the country's primary carbon...
Projects in Progress 2015 - First Edition (PDF Report)
In fact, this edition of Creamer Media’s Projects in Progress 2015 supplement tracks developments taking place under the Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme, which has had four bidding rounds. It appears to remain a shining light on the...
Electricity 2015: A review of South Africa's electricity sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Electricity 2015 report provides an overview of State-owned power utility Eskom and independent power producers, as well as electricity planning, transmission, distribution and the theft thereof, besides other issues.
Construction 2015: A review of South Africa’s construction sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Construction 2015 Report examines South Africa’s construction industry over the past 12 months. The report provides insight into the business environment; the key participants in the sector; local construction demand; geographic diversification;...
Liquid Fuels 2014 - A review of South Africa's Liquid Fuels sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Liquid Fuels 2014 Report examines these issues, focusing on the business environment, oil and gas exploration, the country’s feedstock supplies, the development of South Africa’s biofuels industry, fuel pricing, competition in the sector, the...
Water 2014: A review of South Africa's water sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Water 2014 report considers the aforementioned issues, not only in the South African context, but also in the African and global context, and examines the issues of water and sanitation, water quality and the demand for water, among others.
This Week's Magazine
Today’s organisations execute projects within increasingly complex environments – particularly in the engineering sector. The ability to successfully execute these projects is what drives the realisation of successful projects and, ultimately, the achievement of...
South Africa’s distribution grid is a twentieth-century relic, which must be changed to serve the country’s modern electricity needs, says South African National Energy Development Institute (Sanedi) Smart Grid Programme manager Dr Minnesh Bipath. “What we are...
There is a disparity in government funding provided to integrated transport networks – bus rapid transit (BRT) networks ¬¬– and that given to conventional bus services, says Putco executive director Thys Heyns. “We have neglected and strangled conventional bus...
The Johannesburg Social Housing Company (Joshco) is building 502 rental housing units, valued at R200-million, in Dobsonville, Soweto, which are scheduled for completion in June 2016.
Automotive component manufacturer and distributor Metair is centralising its research and development (R&D) work in Turkey, in an attempt to bolster the company’s ability to produce affordable start/stop batteries. The new R&D centre is part of an expansion plan in...