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South Africa has a population of 43,997,828 (2007 estimate), which gives a population density of 36 persons per sq km (93 per sq mi). South Africa has a multiracial and multi-ethnic population. Of the nearly 44 million inhabitants, approximately 75 per cent of the population is black African, 13 per cent is white, 9 per cent is Coloured (mixed ethnic background), and 3 per cent is Asian.

The blacks belong to nine ethnic groups: Zulu, Xhosa, Batswana, Venda, Sotho, Ndebele, Tsonga, Swazi, and Pedi. The Zulu are the largest of these groups, making up about 22 per cent of the total population. Whites are descended for the most part from British, Dutch, German, and French Huguenot (Protestant) settlers. The people of Dutch ancestry, who often have German and French heritage as well, are known as Afrikaners or Boers and form about 60 per cent of the white population. The Coloured population, which lives chiefly in the Cape provinces, is of mixed racial origin, mainly black and Afrikaner. The Asians are mainly of Indian ancestry and are most numerous in the province of KwaZulu-Natal. A small number of people of Malay origin are also included in the Asian population. They reside mostly in the Cape provinces. In 2005, 58 per cent of the population was classified as urban.
HE Mr Geoff Doidge
Head of Mission
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