Seifsa urges manufacturers to adopt local rather than global focus

Seifsa chief economist, Michael Ade Source: Seifsa

As third quarter GD[ growth of 2.2%  pulled South Africa out of its technical recession, Steel and Engineering Industries Federation of Southern Africa (Seifsa) urged businesses to capitalise on improving local demand in order to expand.

Speaking after yesterday’s release of GDP numbers, Seifsa chief economist Michael Ade said the biggest concern often raised by stakeholders in the broader manufacturing sector was stagnant or poor demand. “As a result manufacturers increasingly turn to regional African and global markets for sales, despite the additional logistic costs involved.

“The improvement in GDP growth provides a platform for local businesses to be inward looking, against the backdrop of an improved demand for their intermediate and finished products,” Ade said.

He added that much work still needed to be done to revive a stuttering South African economy and support industrial growth and expansion. For this to happen, Ade said urgent intervention was needed to prevent the recent electricity blackouts from spiralling out of control as the ripple effect from load shedding would inevitably place businesses under duress, discourage investment and impact negatively on company output and economic growth. “Government needs to continue with identified reforms in beleaguered State-owned enterprises (SOEs), while also containing high debt levels.”

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