Infographic: South Africa’s population in 2017

In 2017 South Africa was home to 56.5-million people. Black South Africans numbered 45.7-million, or 80.8% of the total. There were 5-million coloured South Africans (8.7% of the population), 4.5-million white South Africans (7.9%) and 1.4-million Indian or Asian South Africans (2.6%).

Bar graph and pie chart showing South Africa's population in 2017, according to four main population groups: African, coloured, Indian or Asian and white. Data sourced from Statistics South Africa's 2017 mid-year population estimates.

Read more: South Africa’s population

These ratios have changed slightly since the country held its last census, in 2011. The proportion of black people has increased, that of coloured and Indian South Africans has stayed the same, and the percentage of white people has shrunk.

Census 2011 recorded South Africa’s population 51.8-million, up from the Census 2001 count of 44.8-million. Black South Africans made up 79.2% of the population, coloured and white people each 8.9%, the Indian or Asian population 2.5%, and “other” people – who did not want to be categorised by race – 0.5% of the total.

Researched, written and designed by Mary Alexander.
Updated 28 February 2018.