At a Daimler AG plant that overlooks the East London harbor in South Africa, robots help produce one of the world’s best-selling luxury cars. A line of one-armed, orange, computerized machines works under minimal human supervision, attaching panels to chassis for Mercedes-Benz C- Class sedans.
An empty bus that’s supposed to be taking Lonmin Plc employees back to work rolled along the dusty main road in Marikana in the heart of South Africa’s platinum belt, where miners have been on strike for four months.
In 2008, James Ntseane borrowed 8,000 rand ($931) from African Bank Investments Ltd. to pay for his grandmother’s funeral in the South African village of Ganyesa. It seemed so easy the platinum miner took out two more loans, worth 10,000 rand, for a sofa and house extension over the following six months.
South Africa was ranked last out of 148 countries by the World Economic Forum on the quality of its math and science education, undermining the growth potential of the continent’s second-largest economy.