The "New" South Africa in Africa: Issues and Approaches
Swatuk, Larry A.
Black, David R.
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Today, as South Africans work out their post-apartheid future and as the old political and economic barriers with the rest of the continent crumble, it is probable that there will be a sustained increase in political-economic intercourse between the “hobbled leviathan” of the South and its continental neighbours, near and far. What repercussions will follow from this process? To what extent will it enhance prospects for political and economic development in the rest of the continent, and to what extent may it further constrain them? Who will be the main agents and beneficiaries of this expansion of South African-African interchange, and who will be its casualties? And what security consequences, broadly conceived, will result? This essay proceeds from the view that the process by which South Africa is more fully integrated into the continental political economy will defy broad generalisation. Rather, there is likely to be a complex pattern of “winners” and "losers", along with other interests which remain essentially unaffected, which must be explored and illuminated through careful, theoretically-informed empirical study. Furthermore, various non-state actors—both powerful MNCs and capital-rich development banks, and the proliferating institutions and associations of civil society—will be leading forces in this process, posing significant challenges of strategy and relevance to state and inter-governmental organisations.