JOHANNESBURG - The South African Institute for Race Relations (SAIRR) says if the African National Congress (ANC) could turn the country into a nation of entrepreneurs, policy makers could then learn from immigrants to boost economic growth and job creation
The institute released a report on the economic contribution that non-South Africans make to the economy.
The last few weeks have seen anti-immigrant demonstrations in Pretoria and in parts of Johannesburg.
Researcher Rian Malan says the institute’s study shows that if foreigners were to leave the country, there would be a huge gap in the economy, especially in the retail sector.
“The chief ingredient in foreign success, especially in sectors such as spazas in Soweto, is incredible hard work and disciple.”
The paper looks at why immigrants come to South Africa and describes a push and pull effect where South Africa’s relatively strong economy attracts foreigners, while war and political oppression lead to people leaving their home countries.
The report also estimates unemployment among foreign nationals to be at 14,6% which is a much lower than the rate for locals.
(Edited by Winnie Theletsane)