Structural change in apartheid era South Africa: 1975-93

Aying Liu, David S. Saal

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This paper examines the sources of structural changes in output growth of South Africa's economy over 1975-93 using a decomposition method within the inputoutput (IO) framework for analysing output changes from a demand side perspective. It decomposes output growth into private consumption, government consumption, investment and export components and also measures the impact of import substitution and changes in intermediate input use (as indicated by changes in IO coefficients). It is found that, before 1981, overall output growth was multi-components driven with all the above components contributing positively to economic growth. However, the collapse of investment demand is by far the single largest factor contributing to the economic stagnation that categorizes the post-1981 period.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)235-257
Number of pages23
JournalEconomic Systems Research
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2001


  • output growth
  • structural change
  • decomposition
  • South Africa


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