Fri Nov 6, 2015 10:51AM
A general view of a conveyor belt is seen at a mine in Runstenburg, North Western Province of South Africa, some 170 kms from Johannesburg, on June 11, 2015. (AFP Photo)
A general view of a conveyor belt is seen at a mine in Runstenburg, North Western Province of South Africa, some 170 kms from Johannesburg, on June 11, 2015. (AFP Photo)

The economy in South Africa has contracted in the third quarter by over 1 percent, and with a slowing world economy, the country will have darker days ahead of it.

The figures are dismal. Annual GDP has grown by a mere 1.3 percent in the first three months of this year, a crawl compared with the 4.1 percent achieved in the fourth quarter of 2014. Unemployment is soaring. Even using a narrow definition, it stands at 26.4 percent, the highest since 2003.

Another big problem is electricity cuts. Power cuts are plunging neighborhoods into darkness several times a week, if not daily. Power shortages under Eskom, the failing state utility, have slowed manufacturing.

Moreover, drought has hit agriculture and tourism, and rating agencies have warned that South Africa is getting dangerously close to junk status.