South Africa - Statistics & Facts

as the name suggests, South Africa is located in the most southern part of the continent of Africa. The country is among the largest 30 countries in the world by total area, and it borders six countries: Namibia, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Swaziland, and Lesotho. In 2018, the total population of South Africa amounted to an estimated 58 million inhabitants, a remarkable increase since the beginning of the decade. Population growth in South Africa hovers between 1.3 percent to about 1.6 percent in that time, always being on an ascending path. Regardless of the continuous population growth of the state, the fertility rate has been constantly decreasing in the same time span. One of the reasons for the decreased fertility rate is the high rate of AIDS-related fatalities; South Africa reports the highest number of deaths attributed to this disease.

South Africa became a republic in 1961. Since 1994, when the first multi-racial elections occurred, all ethnic groups have acquired political representation in the state’s democracy. Nowadays, South Africa is a parliamentary republic divided into nine provinces. The largest municipality in the country is the city of Johannesburg with a population of approximately 5 million people, followed by the city of Cape Town. The state does not have one single capital city, but three different cities acingt as capitals: Pretoria as the administrative capital, Cape Town as the legislative capital, and Bloemfontein as the judicial capital. Due to various groups of people constituting different ethnic groups, South Africa has 11 official languages.

The country’s economy is quite diverse. The GDP growth rate greatly fluctuates, reaching its lowest point in 2016, with only a 0.28 percent increase from 2015. After that, GDP picked up and is now estimated to reach a 2.2 percent growth rate by 2020.

The services sector contributes the highest share to GDP of South Africa, whereas the industry sector accounts for almost 30 percent. The tourism industry is one of the key industries in South Africa, the number of tourists visiting the country surpassing 16 million people in 2017 and ever growing.

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