South Africa is heading towards a watershed general election this year. For the first time since the advent of democracy, the ANC faces a real threat to their majority rule. Should this materialise, it leaves a blank canvas for the country’s political future. The polls come amid sluggish economic performance underpinned by corruption, maladministration, and failing state institutions.

South Africa’s GDP is barely growing, and it has narrowly avoided a technical recession at the end of 2023. Therefore, who ends up at the helm of the South African government post-29 May 2024 matters greatly for the country’s long-term economic trajectory.

Although the exact outcome of the general elections remains unclear, our analysis suggests there are at least four possible scenarios. Using these as a basis, Econometrix has attempted to provide possible economic implications for each eventuality, with a focus on the medium-term impact.