What is the South African truth and reconciliation committee?

The Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) was formed after the end of Apartheid. It is a court-like body which assisted anybody who felt they had been a victim of violence during the apartheid era.

Witnesses that were identified as victims of major human rights violations were invited by the commission to give statements about their experiences at public hearings. Perpetrators of violence could also give testimony and request amnesty from both civil and criminal prosecution.

Who are South Africa’s biggest trading partners?

South Africa exports chiefly to Germany, USA, Japan, UK, Italy, China and Switzerland as well as to countries within the African continent.

The biggest export trading partners according to the CIA (https://www.cia.gov/) are China 11.8%, US 8.3%, Japan 6%, Germany 5.7%, India 4.2% (2012)

The country also imports machines, food, capital goods, chemicals, vehicles, equipment components, fuel and energy from countries such as the UK, USA, Saudi Arabia, France and Germany. The biggest importing partners are China 14.4%, Germany 10.1%, Saudi Arabia 7.7%, US 7.4%, Japan 4.6%, and India 4.5% (2012)

South Africa Economic trends and growths

Until the global economic crisis hit South Africa in late 2008, economic growth had been steady and unprecedented. According to Statistics South Africa, GDP rose by 2.7% in 2001, 3.7% in 2002, 3.1% in 2003, 4.9% in 2004, 5% in 2005, 5.4% in 2006, 5.1% in 2007 and 3.1% in 2008.

From the first quarter of 1993 to the second quarter of 2008, the country enjoyed an unprecendented 62 quarters of uninterrupted economic growth.

Get more info about the South African economy here:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Economy_of_South_Africa

What is South Africa’s biggest industry?

Mining is South Africa’s largest industry sector followed by manufacturing, oil and gas, chemicals, agriculture and tourism. Other sectors such as the clothing & textiles, and financial services and banking sectors have shown significant growth in recent years.

South Africa is globally recognised as being a leading supplier of a variety of minerals and mineral products that are exported to as many as 87 countries. Each year, approximately 55 different minerals are produced from more than 700 mining facilities, with gold, platinum group elements (PGE’s), coal and diamonds dominating exports and revenue earnings. Mining and quarrying contributed 4.9% to GDP in 2013.

Get more info here: http://www.mbendi.com/land/af/sa/p0005.htm

How big is the South African state budget?

The Minister of Finance, Mr Pravin Gordhan, announced earlier this year that he had provided tax relief of R9,3 billion in personal income tax relief to individuals, mostly to taxpayers in the lower income brackets.

Government expenditure for the 2014/2015 period is to be allocated as follows:
• Economic affairs – R142,8 billion
• Education – R253,8 billion
• General public services – R180 billion
• Health – R145,7 billion
• Housing & community amenities – R142,9 billion
• Public order and safety – R115,7 billion
• Social protection – R144,5 billion

To read the full summary visit http://www.pwc.co.za/en/assets/pdf/budget-speech-summary-2014.pdf

Is going by train safe in South Africa?

The train system in South Africa is not the most advanced but investment is taking place to improve it. In some areas it is excellent whilst others still need better infrastructure. By daylight (during peak hours) trains are safer than at night.

Can I leave valuables in the car in South Africa?

You should not at any time leave anything valuable in the car. If leaving something valuable in the car is absolutely necessary, then it should be left in the locked trunk of the car, completely out of sight.