A recent report has confirmed the complaints so many South Africans are familiar with by now, showing that citizens of our country work the most number of hours in the world.
According to the data collected by the University of Oxford and collated into their ‘Our World in Data’ report, as of 2017, SA has overtaken all other countries on the globe in hours worked per year.
This is an interesting statistic as we are also one of the countries with the lowest employment rate, meaning those of us who do have jobs have to work extra hard to keep them.
Overall, South Africans work a total of 2 209 hours per year which is more than other countries notorious for their hardworking mentality, such as China at 2 174 hours per year.
In 2017, we took top spot as the hardest working economy in the world just above China, India (2 117), South Korea (2 063) and Malta (2 040).
This was not always the case as SA did not even feature in the top 13 in 2001 or even the 1950s but it seems a lot has changed in recent years.
Other interesting findings in the study were that since the industrial revolution, the number of working hours in most countries has declined, apart from a few outlying cases. People in richer countries are more likely to work less and productivity does indeed decrease as working hours increase and vice versa.
It seems South Africans have it hard when it comes to work, whether we’re struggling with getting a job or just trying to keep up with the work demand. A recent trend has many countries reducing their work week to four days and it seems it would be a good idea for South Africa to follow suit.
Also Read: Push for four-day workweek in UK