Suddenly, consumer products have become a lot more expensive. They have not become more expensive in the normal sense of inflation, but in the sense of hyper-inflation. And this is a bad thing. A very large percentage of the population lives in poverty: The world bank puts the figure at around 23% (see http://data.worldbank.org/country/south-africa) I do not know how these people will cope with this increase in prices.
As to what caused this, I can only speculate. In the last year, the following notable things happened:
- We had an election
- The e-Toll system was activated
- There was general strikes in our mining industry
What I don't understand is how these factors could have such a huge impact on prices. Other countries also have elections and toll systems but do not undergo hikes in prices. We had strikes in South Africa for years, but not price increases on the scale what we are seeing them now.
So I am out of ideas. If I have to speculate, I would have to guess that some large organization somewhere has made a decision that had a massive impact on our economy.