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South Africa personal wealth and quality of life is declining

Legatum Global Prosperity Index 2013-1

 

South Africa slips 5 places to 77th most prosperous country in the world, hampered by poor health and education levels and a low sense of safety and security. Over the past 5 years, South Africa’s ranking has continued to decline. The majority of the lowest ranking countries in the Prosperity Index all come from the sub-Saharan Africa region.

The Legatum Institutes annual prosperity index ranks 142 countries across the globe in terms of income (GDP, economy, wealth) along with well-being (quality of life, governance, sentiment). The index utilizes thousands of datapoints from global data sources, tracking close to 90 variables as well as an average of over 1,500 interviews with people in each of the 142 countries covered.

Over the last five years, South Africa has dropped 33 places to 82nd in the Personal Freedom sub-index because of a decrease in civil choice. Fewer individuals in the country feel satisfied wiht their freedom of choice.  Due to an increasing perception of social support and volunteerism rates, South Africa has risen in the Social Capital sub-index to 65th position.

 

Legatum Global Prosperity Index 2013-2

The top performing countries in the index are Norway, with the strongest economy and highest level of social capital; followed by Switzerland in 2nd and Canada in 3rd.

The highest ranking country in the sub-Saharan Africa region is Botswana with a ranking of 72 followed by South Africa in 77th position. The highest ranked countries in the sub-Saharan Africa region fill out most of the middle and bottom reaches of the index, with plenty of countries slipping in the rankings.

When it comes to entrepreneurship and opportunity, South Africa performed well. This is the country’s highest rank when it comes to sub-indices. South Africa ranked 41st in entrepreneurship and opportunity and governance (53rd); however, education (91st), health (105th) and safety and security (106th) drag on the country’s rank.

The overwhelming majority of individuals that were interviewed (82%) believe that government corruption in the country are widespread and 73% do not feel safe in the country. South Africa has fallen.

Overall, Personal Freedom across the sub-Sahara regions has decreased significantly over the past 2 years. Countries such as South Africa , Ghana and Mali dropped out of the top 50 in the Safety & Security sub-index to 82nd, 79th, and 61st, respectively.  The main reason for the decline is due to the perceived freedom to choose the course of their lives in all 3 countries.

To view the 2013 Legatum Institutes annual prosperity index – CLICK HERE

Source: Legatum Institute