The South Africa: Millennium Development Goals Country Report clearly indicates that South Africa is well on course to meet all Millennium Development Goals and targets. In fact, the current assessment of SA's performance suggests that SA has already met some of the MDGs. This may be related to the fact that when the new democratic government came into being, in 1994, it set itself many targets similar to those articulated in the Millennium Declaration.
Briefly, SA is classified as a middle-income country, with a GDP per capita of approximately R29 422 (or US $4 562), with GDP of R1 374.476 billion (or US $213 100.4 millions) in 2004 and a population estimated at about 46 million. Since 1994, economic growth has been positive (with the exception of 1998 due to the East Asian crisis). GDP growth is now approaching 4% per annum and employment creation is improving.
There are unique difficulties pertaining to comparative data in South Africa, deriving in the main from the fact that, prior to 1994 a number of regions in the country - largely the poorest areas - were classified as "independent homelands" and therefore excluded from the country's data. Further, the 1995 Income & Expenditure Survey (IES) for instance was not based on clearly demarcated and adequately mapped enumeration areas, whereas the 2000 IES was based on improved demarcation and listing of households, based on Census 1996.