What makes South Africa a 3rd world country with 1st world qualities?

10 Answers

  • Nice question. To be rather pedantic, SA is regarded as a developing nation, as well as a Newly Industrialized Nation. This has largely to do with it economic status & GDP than other criteria…

    But i think i understand what you are asking.

    SA is a land of great mineral wealth, the mining of which has made SA a lot of money over the years. As mining is an industry intensive activity, a capable infrastructure is very much needed in order to effeciently get minerals out of the ground and to processing plants, harbours for exports etc. As a result of this SA is a heavily industrialized nation, as well as having a solid infrasturucture (especially under the apartheid regime). I believe it was this drive to create a solid infrastructure that has made SA far more competetive than other african & 3rd world nations. This is thanks to the human resources available then; we had the technical and engineering abilty (we still do, south african firms are widely admired around the world. eg the Burj-al-arab in Dubai was built by Murray & Roberts) as well as the manpower to do so, especially under the oppresive apartheid regime.

    However, the infrastructure was only concentrated in major urban centres, a small part of the country. As a result, poverty and service delivery failure (amongst other failures), due to the current ruling party the ANC, still keep these rural areas 3rd world, and infrasturcture development in the urban areas is stagnating to an alarming degree, as evidenced by the national electricity provider Eskom instituting rolling blackouts as it can no longer handle the load placed on it by rampant develpoment, thanks to govt denying it funds.

    In short, our solid infrastructure, particularly road, rail, water, telecoms, gives us our 1st world qualities (for how long tho? the anc hasnt contributed anythin to maintain and upgrade these) while the levels of poverty, a struggling education system, HIV/Aids, and a governing party far more involved in filling their pockets than actually running the country all conspire to hold SA back to developing nation status

    Hannah: 2nd world countries actually refer to communist states. This system of describing nations comes from the Cold War when you had the west (1st world), then the commies and anyone else who didnt fit (3rd world)

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    What makes South Africa a 3rd world country with 1st world qualities?

  • Economicaly speaking South Africa is very mature, primary sector economic activity (agriculturte and mining) only comprises about 8% of South Africa’s GDP, which is indicative of first world countries which tend to have larger secondary and tersiary economic sectors.

    South Africa also have a strong banking, transport, and comunication infrastructure. That said, wealth in South Africa is very unevenly distributed with about 25% of adults being unemployed and 20% of the population owning 80% of the wealth (and no this is not all the white people). This disproportionate distribution of wealth and the unemployment rate are probably the most significant factors that leads to South Africa being described as a third world country.

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  • a good question!

    but the truth is that south africa is neither a first world country or third. its a 2nd world country i know you may think this doesn’t exist but a 2nd world country is a country that is developing into a 3rd world.

    this means that although SA has many first world qualities it still needs to develop more 1st world qualities and still needs to resolve these problems




  • Socially it’s third-world–ending apartheid still left only two classes–one white and reasonably affluent, and the other black and poor. There are still black enclaves like Lesotho, and unlike first-world countries, the middle class is not in the vast majority. It has abandoned the third- and second-world reliance on natural resources almost exclusively (diamonds are still a deBeers monopoly, and just wait till gold takes a monster hit as the dollar strengthens. Like growing first-world countries, South Africa has a thriving industrial base–it produces much of what it needs, including autos and weaponry–and even exports some of it–a good thing, since it’s oil-poor. Unlike the great first-world nations, it has not yet reached the stage of technological innovation and production, nor is it a major Information Age player.

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    ◄Here is my ALL TIME XI◄ 1. S.Tendulkar 2. S.Gavaskar 3. D.Bradman—Captain 4. B.Lara 5. J.Kallis 6. Sir Sobers — VCaptain 7. K.Sangakkara -Keeper 8. Imran Khan 9. S.Warne 10.M.Murlidaran 11. M.Marshall 12. R.Hadlee My choice has lot of similarities to yours. But here are the differences. ■Leave Mcgrath out. He is just not effective as R.Hadlee or Marshall. ■Sanga is a better wicket keeper batsman than Gilchrist. Just look at his record. ■No chance for Jack Hobbs, Akram or Rhodes. Not that they are bad but just not good enough like others. ■The two best spinners both Murali and Warne should be there. ▬►▬►▬► Now I have to admit that some unchanged opinions of some people will not change even at the end of the world. They can have their opinions. But they cannot simply change the obvious. (1) Bradman is definitely not as great as his avg suggests. Like you said it’s difficult to judge batsman’s true ability if he had played 70% of matches against a single opposition and the rest against minnows at 2 venues. Most of the other greats have played with more variety and versatility. Having said that I think it’s a fair assignment to still call him the best as we cannot leave out his amazing stats. So he is the BEST TEST BATSMAN OF ALL TIME! Yes we say that because we appreciate any great cricketing talent regardless their nationality. I have a little question. What would have happened if Bradman was born in India? Let’s imagine that it was India and SL started playing cricket first since late 1800’s(like England and Australia in reality) and one Indian Batsman maintained an average of 100 and every amazing stat similar to Bradman. Let’s say he played 70% matches against SL and the rest against minnows like Zims and Banglas at two venues in sub-continent. So then will the Aussies and some other non Asian nations would have accepted the “Indian Bradman” as the all time best later? No! They would surely have brought out the facts like he played only in S/continent flat tracks against average SL bowlers plus minnows! Further they would have pointed out that he had never played in seaming wickets against non Asian teams! They would have called that even Ed Cowan was a better batsman than Indian Bradman bcz Cowan had faced quality bowlers in quality pitches! They would call some one like Ricky Ponting is far better than Indian Bradman! I don’t think they would change their opinion even at the end of the world! (2) Yes the Aussies are the all time best cricket team. Bar none. The best in the world baby! (3) Yes since SA started playing cricket after the ban, they improved rapid movements in last 20 years. So as SL evolving from minnow status to be a top side. India also has advanced. (4) He is of course the best spinner and one of the top 5 all time bowlers. His stats speak for himself. Whether some of Aussies take aback to accept the truth or not, it will not change the obvious because…. ◙ ICC has freed Murali 100% and that’s what matters at the end of the day. ◙ Murali is in the record books placing himself above many others. His name is always honorably mentioned when discussing about great bowlers and bowling records (even by Aussie commentators!). ◙ CA invited Murali to be their bowling coach last year So his legacy will remain forever! (5) Both were not fair umpires and had an anti Asian agenda. Once again it’s the obvious. We can debate all day all night long on this but it was clear evident. (6) I included both in my team as they both deserves a place. (7) If 2011 WC is fixed based on Indo-Pak semi final, then 1999 WC final could very well be fixed without a doubt because Pakistan played so poorly like a minnow, having the most boring and one sided world cup final ever in the history! So no need to go through such pointless claims. As there is no evidence or any other proofs by ICC, India will remain as the true world champions even after the end of the world. (8) It’s fair to call Sachin the most complete batsman of all time including the best ODI batsman. Moreover few guys would see me as anti Australian and showing favoritism to India in this post but I’m not. I am talking with facts and valid points. I have given the due credit to Australia and simply stated the obvious and that’s the truth the whole truth and nothing but the truth even at the end of the world!

  • still has problems with aids, poverty, which makes it a third world country

  • well normally we always come third in the tri nations. our third new president to be i assume will take us to 5th world dustbin status.it may be long long while before we come up trumps.

  • Our government…

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