| June 29, 2016

South Africa is pulling out all the stops to encourage and stimulate growth in the manufacturing sector, says Trade and industry Minister Rob Davies.

Speaking at an Indaba (gathering) on manufacturing in Ekurhuleni, near here, Tuesday, Davies emphasised the importance of exploring ideas to make the sector more competitive in the global arena.

South Africa's economy is under pressure and business confidence in the country's fourth biggest sector, manufacturing, is at an all-time low. The sector continues to face challenges such as increasing production and wage costs.

Weakened global demand and the threat of other emerging economies continue to threaten manufacturing growth.

"We have to stimulate our economy so that we are not so dependent on the fortunes of one sector. This Indaba is about industrialisation and all emerging economies have gone past industrialisation," said Davies.

The implementation of tariffs had helped ensure there is fair trade but the manufacturing sector is calling for a level playing field to promote export opportunities.

Bruce Strong, the chairman of industry body Manufacturing Circle, said: "Tariffs for the sake of tariffs, I don't think are necessarily a positive thing. It should be backed by investments to improve competitiveness and this makes sense for an economy that is developing."

Delegates were unanimous that the manufacturing sector needed to diversify and be more innovative in order to be more globally competitive.

Source: Nam New Network


Category: Business & Finance

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