By: Christiaan van Huyssteen (@cvh23)
From a BBC poll:
2012 vs 2013
Views of South Africa have deteriorated
further in 2013, continuing the decline
started in 2012. On average, in the 22
tracking countries surveyed both in
2012 and 2013, 35 per cent of
respondents have positive views of
South African influence in the world—
two points less than in 2012. At the
same time, the proportion of those
holding negative views has increased
by five points to reach 30 per cent.
Factors shaping perceptions of South Africa:
For those who held positive views of South Africa’s influence in the world, 31 per cent
mentioned the traditions and culture as the main reason explaining their positive rating.
South Africa’s foreign policy was the second-placed reason, cited by 23 per cent.
Of those holding negative views, the way South Africa treats its people was cited by three in
ten respondents (30%) to justify their negative rating. South Africa’s foreign policy was also
the second-placed reason (23%), but closely followed by the South African traditions and
culture, and the country’s economy (both 20%).
The ‘cooling’ of opinion is probably down to the stagnating South African economy.
The post-Mbeki economy does not seem to be heading anywhere. There has been no clear policy from the Zuma leadership over what our economic landscape should look like. We have seen an increase in regulations, and no attempts have been made to boost investor confidence through meaningful reassurances.
The view the world is getting of our country is not a positive one overall. There are no good messages about growth, freedom etc. Instead the world hears a story of low growth, corruption, Marikana, HIV and Thamsanqa Jantjie etc.
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