South Africa, the most unequal country in the world – report

Members of the anti-foreigner movement called “Operation Dudula” gather outside a supermarket where foreigners were allegedly employed during a xenophobic rally in Orange Grove in Johannesburg on February 13, 2022. AFP

JOHANNESBURG — South Africa is the most unequal country in the world, with race playing a huge role in a society where 10% of the population own more than 80% of the wealth, a World Bank report said on Wednesday.

“South Africa…is the most unequal country in the world, ranking first out of 164 countries,” the Washington-based institution said in a report titled “Inequality in Southern Africa.”

Almost thirty years after the end of apartheid, “race remains a key driver of strong inequalities in South Africa, due to its impact on education and the labor market”, he said.

When race is considered a factor in income disparities, the report adds, “its contribution to income inequality rises to 41%, while the contribution of education is reduced to 30%”.

“The legacy of colonialism and apartheid, rooted in racial and spatial segregation, continues to reinforce inequalities.”

The country’s neighbors that make up the rest of the Southern African Customs Union – Botswana, Eswatini, Lesotho and Namibia – all top the list of the most unequal countries in the world.

Gender also plays an important role.

In the region, women earn on average 30% less than men at the same level of education.

The pay gap between men and women reaches 38% in Namibia and South Africa.

The unequal distribution of agricultural land is also a factor of inequality, especially in rural areas.

In Namibia, 70% of the 39.7 million hectares of commercial farmland “still belong to Namibians of European descent”, the World Bank said.

The report was produced before the Covid-19 pandemic and its authors used the Gini coefficient – an indicator of income inequality – to rank countries.

RELATED STORIES

Global inequality 2022

Winning the war on inequality

Philippines tops income inequality in Asean, study finds

China among the most unequal countries in the world according to a survey

Subscribe to our daily newsletter

Read more

Don’t miss the latest news and information.

To subscribe to MORE APPLICANT to access The Philippine Daily Inquirer and over 70 titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to news, download as early as 4am and share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.

For comments, complaints or inquiries, Contact us.

About Mitchel McMillan

Check Also

Durban cyclists tackle a race to raise money for St Theresa’s Children’s Home

A GROUP of cyclists from around Durban have united to raise funds for St Theresa’s …