The Fiscal Impact of A Basic Income Grant in South Africa

The high cost and coverage gaps resulting from South Africa’s social security system motivates the need to consider alternative social assistance programmes. One alternative to the current grant system (which is based on the means test) is the Basic Income Grant. In contrast to the means test, which selects a target group of eligible beneficiaries, the Basic Income Grant would provide social assistance to all South Africans.

Research findings indicate that the extension of a Basic Income Grant could potentially induce positive socio-economic effects, for example, the universal nature of the Basic Income Grant would prevent coverage gaps and improve social protection.