Published online by Cambridge University Press: 16 February 2005
Post-apartheid South Africa has recast its regional relations. Nonetheless, much of the literature depicts its policy as a projection of captured interests, for instance big business as embedded in Pretoria's apparent neo-liberal turn. Instead, post-apartheid South Africa's regional relations represent a political compromise, albeit not necessarily an explicit one, that reflects the different visions of South Africa's regional role and their respective political bases. Because their policies reflect the push and pull of competing constituencies, democratic states are rarely one dimensional. Post-apartheid South Africa is no exception, as it attempts to square the political circle of competing political constituencies, such as big business and labour. South Africa's regional relations and, in particular, its policy of regional economic cooperation/integration, are best understood as a reflection of the competing interests within its domestic political economy.
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