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3.1% growth in Gross Domestic Product welcomed

Mar 7, 2018
3.1% growth in Gross Domestic Product welcomed

The Presidency has welcomed the 3.1% growth in Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in the fourth quarter of 2017.

Statistics South Africa (Stats SA) announced on Tuesday that the GDP in the fourth quarter grew by 3.1% following a revised growth of 2.3% in the previous three months. Growth in the third quarter of 2017 was revised upwards from an initial 2%.

The highest contributor to the growth of 3.1% came from agriculture, which grew by 37.5 % followed by strong growth from the trade sector, which grew by 4.8%.

While GDP growth remains subject to a broad range of market factors and can fluctuate based on such factors, the Presidency said the fourth quarter improvement should motivate all South Africans.

“The Quarter 4 figure does suggest the economy is taking a turn for the better, thanks to the efforts of all stakeholders in our economy. It is also a very appropriate accompaniment to the positive sentiment with which South Africans and the global community are embracing South Africa’s current renewal,” the Presidency said in a statement on Tuesday.

The Presidency said it hopes that growth of this kind experienced in fourth quarter will be sustained and that it will translate into meaningful job creation.

Meanwhile the African National Congress (ANC) said that it also welcomes the 3.1% increase in the GDP. 

"The ANC is however disappointed with the 4.4% decrease in the mining and quarrying industry.

"It is for this reason that the ANC calls on government to urgently implement the call made by the President in the State of the Nation Address to intensify engagements with all stakeholders on the Mining Charter to effectively transform the face of mining in South Africa in order to stimulate growth and create job opportunities," said ANC National Spokesperson, Pule Mabe.

"We are encouraged by the above expectation of 1.3% increase in the real annual GDP in 2017 as compared to the 0.6% increase in 2016 and thus confirming that the Budget GDP forecast of 1.5% for 2018 is on the low side."

Mabe said that "this good story augurs well with our commitment to working with all stakeholders to create jobs for the people of South Africa, in particular the youth".

"We remain committed to the agenda of radical transformation of the South African economy as per the resolutions of the 54th National Conference," he added.

"Ours remains the fundamental change in the structure, systems, institutions and patterns of ownership and control of the economy in favour of all South Africans."

-additional reporting SAnews.gov.za