Namibia manages the economy well, but creates too few jobs

Macroeconomics and markets

Most Namibians think that the economy has been well managed over the years, but at the same time, they think that the government has failed in creating enough jobs and narrowing income gaps. Successive Afrobarometer surveys have shown that the Namibian economy is managed well (62% in 2012, 60% in 2008, and 76% in 2006).

How do we account for the fact that recent figures (R6) show that slightly over 65% of Namibians positively evaluate how the economy is managed, while 68% think that the realm of job creation is handled badly? Job creation is far and away the “most important problem” identified by Namibian respondents in Round 6. It could well be that with low inflation, manageable public debt and robust fiscal discipline; most Namibians think that the economy is in good hands. Therefore, the consistently positive appraisal of how the Namibian economy is managed speaks to macroeconomics, while hiding intricacies that, for respondents, characterise the ‘real’ state of the economy. If what we mean by ‘managing the economy well’ relates to economic growth, then the consistently positive evaluation of how the Namibian economy is managed provides a false and inaccurate perception of everyday economic life for respondents.

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