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Economy 13 Feb 2024

An outlook on the Economy in 2024

"There are years that ask questions, and years that answer"

These are years brimming with uncertainty and searching questions. Indeed, it feels like the onset of an altogether new era inaugurated with seismic shifts across politics, economies, and society.

For instance, the pendulum is lurching from democracy to illiberalism; from fading Western dominance to accelerating Eastern ascent; from moderate multilateralism to combative geopolitics; from conventional life to overlapping virtual identity; and many more structural shifts.

2024 opens with 2 wars, a Red Sea inflamed, and a failing Rules-based doctrine. Half the world’s adult population will make electoral choices with regard to the people and policies that should govern them. Meanwhile, the unflinching drift to illiberalism is poignant.

In South Africa, a new age of coalition politics beckons. Ambitions to shed the yoke of slow economic growth and blanket misgovernance will stall under the weight of a year of two halves. The first half, thick with election forecasting and manifestos. The second half, welcoming a new government, the election of a new president, and a new cabinet.

Buckle up!

Goolam Ballim
Chief Economist
Standard Bank Group

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