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South Africa has the longest working hours in the world - University of Oxford

CapeTalk logo CapeTalk 2019-12-10
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We work longer hours here in South Africa than anywhere else in the world.

Workers in Africa’s most advanced economy work 2209 hours per year, according to Our World in Data (University of Oxford).

That is more than notoriously hardworking China (2174 hours per year, in second place) and South Korea (2063 hours per year, in fourth place after India).

Countries with the longest working hours (2017):

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But it wasn’t always like it.

As recently as 2001, we were still relatively laidback:

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Countries with the longest working hours (1950):

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Watch this fascinating visualisation of the “Our World in Data” stats by Italy-based “Statistics and Data”:

Replay Video

Hours spent working says almost nothing about productivity, however.

In most societies, as productivity increases, hours working per week decreases.

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Our World in Data's research team is based at the University of Oxford.

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