South Africa's democratic transition now lies close to a decade in the past. The transition carried with it much by way of hopes in terms of greater access by its population, not only to an improved rights environment. It was envisaged that the political self-realization of all South African citizens would also bring with it access to improved economic well being. Employment, as well as rising per capita income, is an obvious indicator of progressive development for the population of a country.
In this paper, we consider the implications of evidence that has emerged over the past four years that carries insight into the growth and employment creation performance of the South African economy. The emphasis is explicitly on why limitations in the growth performance of the South African economy may have emerged. As such, the tone will have a tendency toward the gloomy. This should not obscure the considerable achievements on the economic policy front over the past decade. Success, particularly with regard to macroeconomic stabilization policy, is notable.