Issue Brief

Recalibrating South Africa’s Role in Post-Conflict Reconstruction Processes in Africa

in Program

South Africa’s story as an emerging donor, and an increasing force to reckon with in development partnerships and enterprises, particularly in conflict and post-conflict countries is increasingly being recognized by scholars as well as members of the international community. While this is work in progress, there is no doubt that out of the 54 African states, the country has taken a lead role in pursuing the objectives of achieving and sustaining peace in a number of African countries, the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) being one of the recipients of such partnerships. The growing involvement of South Africa as a development partner in Africa is not surprising given that it is one of the biggest economies in Africa. According to the World Bank2, South Africa is currently the second-largest economy in sub-Saharan Africa, following Nigeria, and it contributes more than 21 percent of the region’s gross domestic product. Thus, relatively speaking, South Africa is characterized by economic, political, and military might, compared with several African countries. Not only is South Africa influential in the Southern African Development Community (SADC), but it also plays a huge political and economic role in the continent. As a result of its unique position, South Africa has been increasingly refining its development assistance outlook, particularly toward African states, and especially conflict and post-conflict states. In fact, South Africa is increasingly playing important roles in peacebuilding and post-conflict reconstruction processes, and has been among the key international actors in countries such as the Central African Republic, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Burundi, Madagascar, Somalia, South Sudan and Zimbabwe, among others.

Click here for the full series “Changing Landscape of Assistance to Conflict-Affected States: Emerging and Traditional Donors and Opportunities for Collaboration.

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