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8 July 2002
Facts about the South African Economy 

...Doom and Gloom?

Now for the good news (or shall we say better)...

The South African GDP has shown a remarkable upswing shortly after the first 'free and fair' elections in 1994.

 
1992
-2.1
1993
1.2
1994
3.2
1995
3.1
1996
4.2
1997
2.5
1998
0.7
1999
1.9
2000
3.1
2001
2.2
2002
2.3 (estimated)
Source: Finance Week 2 November 2001, Trevor Manuel Parliamentary Budget  Feb 2002

Other African countries were forecasted as such :
Anglola a staggering 10.3 mainly due to oil revenues, the DRC 2.5, Zambia 3.0 and Botswana 4.1. The troubled Zimbabwe at -5.0, Namibia 3.5 with South Africa and Lesotho less than 2.8.

The South African export market has seen plenty growth in the export market, especially during 2002 due to the weak Rand. 50% increase of exports to Europe was evident during the first half of 2001. Platinum outperformed gold in foreign revenue. Manufactured goods showed a 60% increase in the first seven months with a 46% increase in motor vehicle and transport equipment exports. No wonder that BMW won the award for the best manufacturing facility worldwide this year! This award is bestowed by BMW to BMW manufacturers worldwide showing the highest quality build of vehicles covering all their plants.

The inflation rate showed a steady decrease (thanks to the very tough times imposed on South African citizens by Trevor Manuel). 1994 we were at 9% with 1997 down 1%, 2001 down a further 2% to 6%. And of course an interest rate hike or two or three we're up to 6.9%. 

Seems to me that the bad news are more depressing than what the good news can bring. With our Zimbabwean neighbour causing major problems for the region it is no wonder foreigners are sceptical about investment. Mbeki's stance does not help either. Then of course little groups of people are popping up all over the place claiming 'retribution' from international conglomarates for supporting the 'apartheid regime' eight years ago. If these claims are all succesful, what is going to stop the white South African (specifically the Boer) from claiming vast amounts of money from the British for the pain, suffering and killing of thousands of Boers during the war back in 1880? And moving internal, the Zulu's can be sued by just about every other ethnic group in the country!

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