Africa came through the depths of theeconomic crisis better than manyexpected, growing even faster than theaverage for emerging and developingeconomies during the crisis. This article originally appeared on pagefour of South Africa Now, a six-pagesupplement to the Washington Postproduced on behalf of Brand South Africa.(Click to enlarge.)MEDIA CONTACTS• Thabo Masebe, spokesperson to DeputyPresident Kgalema Motlanthe+27 82 410 firstname.lastname@example.orgKgalema MotlantheThe world is changing – this is now well known. What is less well known or not yet understood is that Africa is changing as much as, if not more than, the rest of the world.Africa is the second-fastest-growing region in the world, after “Developing Asia”, and has been for most of the last decade. Forecasts from the International Monetary Fund and the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) expect this to continue to be the case.The first decade of 21st century has seen some of the most profound changes in the balance of the world economy. The dramatic extent of the shift was evident during the depths of the world financial crisis. During the course of 2009, the economies of the OECD member countries shrank by about 3.3%. Only three members of the OECD grew at all – South Korea, Australia and Poland. Overall, gross fixed investment fell in the OECD countries by nearly 12% and unemployment rose sharply.At the same time, developing countries grew by about 1.2%. So, in the middle of the financial crisis, the developing grew 4.5% faster than the OECD member countries. And investment remained positive in many of these countries.In the past it was the other way around – when the industrialised countries sneezed, the world got a cold. In the past, economists from the developed countries told the developing countries what they should be doing. In the past, they said that developing countries should behave more like the developed countries. This time the virus has attacked the industrialised countries most severely, and they have been looking at developing countries like China, India, Brazil and South Africa to help pull them from recession back to growth.The developing countries are not autonomous from the industrialised countries. Indeed, the world economy is more integrated than ever before, and all markets are linked. Yet, we do now have a world where the sources of growth are multiple – it is no longer a case of one or two locomotives pulling the world economy forward. This is “the new reality”.The dynamism in the world economy is clearly shifting from North to South and from West to East. The OECD Development Centre estimates that, measured in terms of real domestic buying power, the developing countries will have a larger share of the world economy than the OECD countries by 2012. By 2030, developing countries will have 57% of the world economy, and the current OECD members 43%.The developing world contributed almost 70% of world growth measured in terms of domestic buying power during the last decade. China alone contributed nearly 30% of world growth.Africa is now seen in a new light. It came through the depths of the economic crisis better than many expected, growing even faster than the average for emerging and developing economies during the crisis. Africa grew by about 2.5%, on average, during 2009. While a few of the bigger economies were more severely affected by the crisis, most African countries grew even faster than that.This is an edited excerpt of a speech by South African Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe to the Emerging Markets Summit 2010: the New Reality. Download the original speech in PDF format (120 KB).Download South Africa Now in PDF format, or read selected articles online:Powering towards a green economySouth Africa plans to build a massive $21.8-billion, 5 000 MW solar park in its semi-desert Northern Cape province as part of an aggressive push to grow its highly industrialised economy without increasing its carbon footprint.The everyday beauty of SowetoSouth African photographer Jodi Bieber has a special ability to bring out the beauty in the ordinary, even the disfigured. On the cover of Time magazine she made a mutilated Afghani girl look beautiful, and in her latest book Soweto she makes everyday township life shine.Launchpad to a billion consumersBy offering to acquire Massmart for some $4.2-billion, Wal-Mart has joined the parade of global companies looking to South Africa as a springboard into what is increasingly seen as the world’s last great investment frontier.A trek to the start of timeIt will probe the edges of our universe. It will be a virtual time machine, helping scientists explore the origins of galaxies. It’s the Square Kilometre Array, and South Africans are at the heart of its development.Brewing up a global brandMiller Lite. Tastes great. Less filling. And brought to you by world-beating South African company SABMiller.Looking south and east for growthAs the shift in global economic power gains momentum, South Africa’s trade is moving eastwards and southwards in a pattern that both reflects the worldwide trend and helps drive it, writes John Battersby.More than just a celluloid MandelaThere is a special bond between Hollywood actor Morgan Freeman and the man he played in the Clint Eastwood movie Invictus, South African statesman Nelson Mandela.Africa in the new world orderKgalema Motlanthe, South Africa’s deputy president, looks at how African economies’ resilient performance during the global financial crisis points to the continent’s new place in a changing world.Mining history for new solutionsMark Cutifani, CEO of the multinational AngloGold Ashanti mining company, examines why South Africa’s past is key to successfully doing business here in the future.Turning up the media volumeSince 1990, South Africa has been a noisy place. After decades of apartheid censorship, the lifting of restrictions on the media led to a cacophony of debate. For the first time in centuries, everyone could be heard, and it was sometimes deafening, writes Anton Harber.A joule of an energy-efficient carSouth Africa, which builds BMWs and Mercedes Benzes for the US market, is in the thick of the race to deliver a truly practical – and stylish – electric car. Meet the Joule.South Africa: Time to believeThe forgiving philosophy of “ubuntu” helps explain how South Africa managed to transcend its turbulent apartheid past and create a unified democracy, writes Simon Barber.Finding sound real estate investmentSouth Africa’s post-apartheid transformation and new middle class are fuelling demand for affordable homes. For private equity fund International Housing Solutions, that means opportunity.My normal, crazy, mixed-up countrySouth African hit movie White Wedding is now showing in the US to rave reviews. Jann Turner, who directed and jointly wrote and produced the film, writes about the place that inspired it – South Africa.Bring on the braaiAll South Africans love it – including Nobel peace prize-winning Desmond Tutu – and its rich, smoky smell floats over the country every Sunday. Celebrate the braai with our great recipe for making boerewors, traditional South African farmer’s sausage.
With supplies drying up and the indefinite strike in the Darjeeling hills entering its 27th day today, all eyes are set on the all-party meeting scheduled to be held today in Mirik area of the hills.The all-party meeting, convened by the Gorkha Janmukti Morcha (GJM), will be attended by all political parties of the hills. The meeting was scheduled to be held on July 18 but was advanced to July 11 following the violence in the hills on Saturday.Many hill parties are in favour of relaxing the shutdown for few days as the supplies of food and essentials have dried up due to the indefinite strike, Jan Andolan Party (JAP) sources said. A section of hill parties want the GJM to sit for the tripartite talks.This is the fourth such meeting in 27 days. The first, second and the third all-party meetings were held on June 20, June 29, and July 6 respectively. The GJM took out huge rally in Mirik demanding Gorkhaland. Incidentally, GJM had lost Mirik municipality to TMC in the last municipal polls held in May. Police and security forces patrolled the streets and kept a vigil on the entry and exit routes.While Internet services remained snapped for the last 24 days, all shops barring pharmacies, schools and colleges remained closed. An Army column, comprising of around 50 personnel, was deployed in Kalimpong last night, defence sources said.Two columns of the Army have already been positioned in Darjeeling and Sonada on Saturday due to extensive arson and violence. read more
There are opportunities for businesses to expand and figures indicate that a number of operations in Western Jamaica are growing. The Expo, for the first time, will be free to the public over all three days. Business operators urged to focus on employing strategies for growth. Story Highlights President of the Montego Bay Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Nathan Robb, has made a call for business operators to focus on employing strategies for growth.He noted that despite challenges in the economy, there are opportunities for businesses to expand and figures indicate that a number of operations in Western Jamaica are growing.“While we might not have…the larger industries such as manufacturing, we do have several business process outsourcing (BPO) companies based here,” he said, noting that the BPO sector is a mass employer in the region.Mr. Robb was speaking at a Think Tank on Thursday, September 26, at the Jamaica Information Service’s (JIS) Montego Bay Regional Office, ahead of the chamber’s annual Expo slated for the Montego Bay Convention Centre from October 11 to 13.“We must begin to see growth as an incremental step in expanding our businesses, our services, our products…if you are able to employ two more persons, you have grown, and that is what we say, do more, be more,” he said.“If you are able to employ four more persons, the spin-off effects directly to the individuals and the economy is far great,” he added.The Expo, which for the first time, will be free to the public over all three days, is being held under the theme: ‘Services Globalization…Enabling Business Development.’ It will serve as an avenue to showcase products and services that are offered by business persons from Western Jamaica, and other parts of the island.Focus will be placed on logistics, food processing, hospitality, education and training, and the financial services sectors.Mr. Robb said that there will be opportunity for business-to-business interactions and there will be a wide array of exhibitions from local and overseas businesses.He said that the Expo has been successful over the years, as “we have helped to assist businesses to expand their markets, to access necessary goods and services.”“Jamaica, having celebrated 50 years of Independence, stands on the threshold of modernity, and the Montego Bay Chamber of Commerce and Industry is positioned to assist in Jamaica achieving this modernity, so Expo 2013 is an opportunity to showcase goods, services, and all that we would need to ensure that growth is achieved, and the modernity is achieved,” Mr. Robb stated. read more