Browsing by Author "Sadie, J. L. (Johannes L.), 1918-"
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- ItemThe economic demography of South Africa(Stellenbosch : Stellenbosch University, 2000) Sadie, J. L. (Johannes L.), 1918-; McCarthy, C. L.; Smit, B. W.; Stellenbosch University. Faculty of Economic and Management Sciences. Dept. of Economics.ENGLISH ABSTRACT: It is remarkable that population, which is at the centre of the economic problem - the Wealth if not the Poverty of Nations - has received scant attention in economic research in South Africa. Which is probably why we can have a NEW - so designated in the Draft Report - population policy propounded by government (in 1997) which manifests little appreciation of the economics of population. This dissertation is an attempt to demonstrate why the void should be filled and to bring to light specific topics within the broader subject matter that could be fruitfully researched. The demographic scene in South Africa lends itself to a telling demonstration of the economic effects of population movements by way of contrasting the experience of the high fertility, youthful Black population - with a total fertility rate of around 37 after having been 6,75 in the 1950s - and that of the demographically older non-Blacks, among whom the Whites exhibit a fertility level way below the replacement rate of 2,1, while that of the Asians (Indians) and Coloureds has almost reached that rate. Since the former has a share of more than a dominant three-quarters in the aggregate South African population, the emphasis is inevitably on the economic consequences of rapid population growth and its attendant demographic magnitudes: fertility, mortality, migration, age and sex composition, spatial distribution and, what is called "economic quality" of the population as manifested in its supply of enterprise. The analysis is presented in the traditional supply and demand paradigm. Supply is examined by linking demographic forces to the five factors of production whose co-operation is responsible for the generation of the national product: entrepreneurship, (ordinary) labour, natural resources, technology and capital. The population has to generate an adequate supply of entrepreneurs, and the two human factors of production have to have one or more of the non-human factors at their disposal to accommodate the population economically. Proliferating human numbers can be destructive of natural resources, and in conflict with the formation of capital, the accumulation of technology and their potential economic welfare-enhancing operation. The demand aspects are analysed by linking on to the four macro demand components in the national accounts system: Household consumption, Government consumption, Investment (visa- vis saving) and foreign trade. Some of the issues discussed are: the stability deriving from a population elasticity of demand close to 1,0; the comparative significance of the population versus the affluence factor; the role of high fertility in the acquisition, at the election polls, of economic power via political power, and its consequences for the diversion of demand; the capital absorbed in "demographic investments"; and the significance of the South African factor endowment for its foreign trade. From the above analyses conclusions could be drawn about econormc growth, poverty, unemployment and the economic value of a life. In human populations, in sub-Saharan Africa at least, quantity is the adversary of quality.