Category Archives: Import and exports

After two years, GDP returns to pre-pandemic levels

After two years, GDP returns to pre-pandemic levels

South African gross domestic product (GDP) expanded by 1,9% in the first quarter of 2022, representing a second consecutive quarter of upward growth.1 The size of the economy is now at pre-pandemic levels, with real GDP slightly higher than what it was before the COVID-19 pandemic. This release covers the first quarter of the year   read more »


Foot-and-mouth: Where do the livestock live?

Foot-and-mouth: Where do the livestock live?

Foot-and-mouth disease is scary. The recent outbreak, identified in at least five provinces, has serious implications for the livestock industry. Stats SA takes a look at the revenue streams that might be affected, and identifies where vulnerable industries might be located. What products does agriculture depend on the most? The disease is relentless. It spreads   read more »


Going with the flow: Tracking products through our economy

Going with the flow: Tracking products through our economy

Economically, no country is an island. Just as a household cannot produce all that it needs on its own, South Africa depends on global trade for a range of goods and services. Take crude petroleum. Figure 1 tracks oil-related transactions across our economy, showing where crude petroleum comes from and where it ends up. The   read more »


Pre-lockdown business profits fall to their lowest level in 14 years

Pre-lockdown business profits fall to their lowest level in 14 years

Net profit before tax in the formal business sector tumbled by 33,4% in the financial year 2020 compared with 2019, with business services and manufacturing the hardest hit. The data, from Stats SA’s latest Annual financial statistics (AFS) survey1 , which mostly covers the period before the lockdown, show that total net profit before tax   read more »


The nature of South Africa’s protected area estate

The nature of South Africa’s protected area estate

Protected areas are national assets that serve as nodes in South Africa’s ecological infrastructure network, protecting ecosystems that deliver important services to people, such as the production of clean water, flood moderation, prevention of erosion, and the aesthetic value of the landscape. They provide a home for the country’s most iconic species as well as   read more »


PGM sales surge due to higher prices

PGM sales surge due to higher prices

Like all other commodities, South Africa’s production of platinum group metals (PGMs) was volatile in 2020 as miners tried to navigate the uncertainty and economic damage caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Here is a snapshot of how PGM production, prices and sales fared during the year. Supplies were adversely affected by COVID-19 related mine disruptions   read more »


Further data shows lagging infrastructure investment

Further data shows lagging infrastructure investment

In June 2020, government announced the roll-out of an extensive infrastructure investment drive that would cover 55 projects across six sectors. The programme is an attempt to kick-start an economy battered by COVID-19, as well as to address a history of chronic infrastructure underspending.1 The concern over declining infrastructure investment is further confirmed by Stats   read more »


Steep slump in GDP as COVID-19 takes its toll on the economy

Steep slump in GDP as COVID-19 takes its toll on the economy

The punch in the gut was severe. Perhaps the second quarter of 2020 will become known as the pandemic quarter. South Africa’s economy suffered a significant contraction during April, May and June, when the country operated under widespread lockdown restrictions in response to COVID-19. Gross domestic product (GDP) fell by just over 16% between the   read more »


GDP falls by 2,0%

GDP falls by 2,0%

The South African economy recorded its third consecutive quarter of economic decline, falling by 2,0% (seasonally adjusted and annualised) in the first quarter of 2020.1 This followed a contraction of -1,4% and -0,8% in the fourth and third quarters of 2019, respectively. The results presented here cover the period 1 January 2020 to 31 March   read more »


Economy dodges recession as GDP climbs 3,1%

Economy dodges recession as GDP climbs 3,1%

After shrinking sharply in the first quarter of 2019, the economy rebounded from a low base to record positive growth of 3,1%1 in the second quarter (April−June). Mining, finance, trade and government services were the main drivers of growth. Three industries (construction, agriculture and transport) registered a slump in production. Mining was the strongest performer   read more »