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South Africa: Slow Commodity Demand Affects Economy

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The Presidential Business Working Group is worried that the end of the so-called mineral commodity super cycle is a major constraint to South Africa’s economic growth, says Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davies.

Some analysts have blamed the end of the super cycle on slowing growth in China. Speaking to the media after the Presidential Business Working Group meeting in Pretoria on Friday, Minister Davies said the problem is now compounded by the surplus of steel on world markets, which is also affecting South Africa.

“We cannot anticipate that there will be a return to the commodity super cycle anytime soon, not least, because there are structural factors including the change in the trajectory of growth in China,” he said. He said government will use the nine point plan, announced by President Jacob Zuma earlier this year, to address challenges discussed in the meeting. Government also presented to the meeting plans to grow the economy in areas that include industrialisation, infrastructure, innovation, investment, inclusion and integration.

Minister Davies said the meeting also discussed the state of the mining economy and those who attended welcomed the announcement that there will be Operation Phakisa in the mining sector in the near future.

“Our economy is facing challenges, growth rate is below what is ought to be, the inclusive growth levels are also where they need to be, but at the same time we have been registering progress even in areas of attracting investment,” he said.

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