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Whites still earning three times more than blacks in South Africa

Whites still earning three times more than blacks in S.Africa

Whites in South Africa earned three times more than blacks on average, two decades after the demise of apartheid, according to a report shared on Thursday by the country’s statistics authority.

The report, which shed light on the highly sensitive issue of inequality, research found that the wage gap between South Africa’s groups increased between 2011 and 2015. 

It said the average monthly earning among blacks – who account for 80 per cent of the population – was 6,899 rand, while the figure was 24,646 for whites. 

Income earnings in South Africa remained “heavily racialised,” the statistics authority said.

It added that women earned roughly 30 per cent less on average than males.

Africa’s most industrialised nation has struggled to bridge the gap between racial and gender groups since the fall of apartheid in 1994.

For decades, the apartheid system legally divided South Africans into groups of whites, blacks, Indians and “coloureds,” a term designating people of mixed race.

The report did not compare wage inequality between 2015 and today.

The issue is deeply controversial, touching on issues such as inherited capital and access to quality education. 

The new report was compiled by Statistics SA, the Southern Africa Labour and Development Research Unit and the Agence Francaise de Developpement (AFD).

“Black Africans are generally more vulnerable to labour markets and unemployment is high among that population group,” Statistician-general Risenga Maluleke told local radio station 702 after he released the report.

Black Africans make up the bulk of the country’s jobless at over 46 per cent with just under 10 per cent of whites facing unemployment.

The report, which also studied poverty trends, concluded that households headed by blacks and “coloureds” were “chronically” poor.

Blacks also had the lowest levels of access to the internet and health insurance coverage. 

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