The White Exodus from South Africa - part 1

Those of us, who are home sick, are looking for signs for when we can
return, when is the government going to realise that they need us urgently.

*Johannesburg - One million white South Africans - almost a fifth - have
left the country in the past ten years.*

This figure was released last week (October 2007?) in a report from the
South African Institute of Race Relations (SAIRR).

Frans Cronjé, who compiled the report, said it was especially crime and
affirmative actions which had driven a fifth of South Africa's white
population out of the country.

He did an analysis of Statistics South Africa's Household Surveys
between 1995 and 2005, emigration figures and other reliable estimates
on population numbers.

Cronjé said the results left himself and his colleagues dumbfounded.

"When we drew the graphs we saw that almost a whole generation of white
South Africans are not here anymore."

Young people, children leaving

The SAIRR's population pyramid of white South Africans show a definite
loss of young people and children under the age of ten.

The figures for 2005 put the number of white South Africans in the
country at 4.3 million, 841 000 fewer than the 5.2 million of 1995.

Cronjé predicts that the white population would continue to shrink, and,
he said, the situation would have a far-reaching impact on the economy.

"The white population is getting older, which means the white taxpayers
are only going to contribute to the economy for the next twenty years.
There would have to be a huge influx of skilled workers to fill this
gap. This, unfortunately, is not the case."

Due to the inequalities of the past, the education of most of the black
children is still not on par to fill these gaps.

Last year, for example, only 3 000 black learners passed matric with
higher grade mathematics, said Cronjé.

*Economically productive*

Most of the white emigrants are economically productive people, said
Marco Macfarlane, co-author of the report.

However, in the last decade the black economically productive population
did grow by 81%. Some of these people have slotted into the high-income
group, where black people make up a third of the top earners.

Whites, still account for half of this group, where Indians and
coloureds make up 7% and 6% of the high-income group respectively

The rest of the black entrants to the labour market are busy in the
informal sector, and do not contribute to the tax income

"Black people are entering the economy at a stiff pace, but of the
economically active middle class (the country's biggest tax
contributors), blacks account for only 1%."

Macfarlane said crime and affirmative action are the top reasons for the
exodus of whites.

More whites are going to leave

"And because the crime figures are not going to decline rapidly and
affirmative action is to continue, more whites are going to leave.

"Most young people reckon they are being punished for what happened in
the previous dispensation. They are furious, because they feel they had
no part in it," said Macfarlane.

According to the report the emigrants are between 20 and 40 years old.

"This is the group that have children and help grow the population, but
now they're getting their children overseas. And they don't come back.
That means the white population is going to continue to shrink."

The decline in the white population in the decade to 2005 is estimated
at 16.1%.



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