Newsdeck

S.Africa economy grows 1.3% in 2017, beats expectations

By AFP 6 March 2018

South Africa's economy grew by a better than expected 1.3 percent in 2017 driven by agriculture and finance, Stats SA said on Tuesday, beating forecast growth of 1 percent.

The improved economic performance “was partly driven by an agriculture industry bouncing back from one of the worst droughts in recent history”, it said.

“After a wobbly start to 2017, which saw economic activity contract in the first quarter, the economy saw sustained growth for the remainder of the year. The fourth quarter experienced the highest growth rate of 2017, with the economy expanding by 3.1 percent quarter-on-quarter,” Stats SA said in a statement. 

The trade sector also contributed to Tuesday’s good news, Stats SA added, and was the second largest contributor to fourth-quarter growth.

South Africa’s economy has experienced sluggish growth in recent years with the jobless rate rising to 27.7 percent.

In April, the country lost its investment grade credit rating when the world’s two major agencies, Fitch and Standard & Poor’s, downgraded its sovereign debt to junk status.

Their move was partly blamed on former president Jacob Zuma’s sacking of respected finance minister Pravin Gordhan in March.

Since President Cyril Ramaphosa succeeded Zuma last month, the stock market has rebounded and the local rand currency has reached its strongest level against the dollar in three years on hopes he will reform the economy. DM

Gallery

Want to watch Richard Poplak’s audition for SA’s Got Talent?

Who doesn’t? Alas, it was removed by the host site for prolific swearing*... Now that we’ve got your attention, we thought we’d take the opportunity to talk to you about the small matter of book burning and freedom of speech.

Since its release, Pieter-Louis Myburgh’s book Gangster State, has sparked numerous fascist-like behavior from certain members of the public (and the State). There have been planned book burnings, disrupted launches and Ace Magashule has openly called him a liar. And just to say thanks, a R10m defamation suit has been lodged against the author.

Pieter-Louis Myburgh is our latest Scorpio Investigative journalist recruit and we’re not going to let him and his crucial book be silenced. When the Cape Town launch was postponed, Maverick Insider stepped in and relocated it to a secure location so that Pieter-Louis’ revelations could be heard by the public. If we’ve learnt one thing over the past ten years it is this: when anyone tries to infringe on our constitutional rights, we have to fight back. Every day, our journalists are uncovering more details and evidence of State Capture and its various reincarnations. The rot is deep and the threats, like this recent one to freedom of speech, are real. You can support the cause by becoming an Insider and help free the speech that can make a difference.

*No video of Richard Poplak auditioning for SA’s Got Talent actually exists. Unless it does and we don’t know about it please send it through.


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