South Africa’s Q4 GDP growth exceeds expectations as manufacturing, mining recover strongly

By bne IntelliNews February 24, 2015

A robust recovery of the manufacturing and mining industries helped South Africa’s economy grow 4.1% q/q on a seasonally adjusted and annualised basis in the fourth quarter of last year, speeding up from an upwardly revised 2.1% q/q growth in the preceding quarter, well above expectations, data from Statistics South Africa showed. Analysts polled by the Business Day predicted a 3.5% growth, while a Reuters poll suggested a 3.7% expansion. Q3 GDP growth was revised form an initial estimate of 1.4%.

The country’s full-year GDP growth slowed to 1.5% last year from 2.2% in 2013, but was above analyst and official estimates of a 1.4% expansion.

On an unadjusted y/y basis, the country’s real gross domestic product at market prices increased by 1.3% in Q3, decelerating from a revised 1.6% (from 1.4%) growth in Q3.

The main driver for the 4.1% quarterly GDP growth was the manufacturing industry (contribution of 1.2pp), which rebounded to a 9.5% growth after three consecutive quarters of contraction affected by strikes. The mining sector also outperformed, posting a 15.2% growth, up from 3.9% in Q3, and contributed 1.1pp to the overall development. Next, the finance, real estate and business services industry contributed 0.7pp to the overall GDP growth, on the back of a 3.5% expansion, up from 2.4% in Q3.

On a y/y basis, the best performing sectors in Q4 were agriculture (+4.2%), construction (+2.9%), and transport, storage and communication (+2.6%). On the opposite sides, the mining industry contracted 1.6% and the utilities sector shrank 0.9% y/y.

The nominal GDP at market prices was ZAR979bn ($84bn) in Q4, by ZAR16bn more than in Q3. The largest industries, as measured by their nominal value added in Q4, were finance, real estate and business services with a share of 20.7%, general government services with 16.9%, the wholesale, retail and motor trade and catering and accommodation industry with 16%, and the manufacturing industry with 13.7%. For the full-year 2014, nominal GDP was ZAR3.8trn.

South Africa’s GDP growth is expected to strengthen to around 2.2% this year, driven by improved labour relations, lower oil prices, and increasing exports, but constrained by electricity supply disruptions.

Related Articles

UK’s Vedanta Resources to invest $1bn in Zambian copper mine

The UK-listed diversified resource and mining company Vedanta Resources will invest $1bn in its Zambian mining unit Konkola Copper Mines (KCM), creating 7,000 jobs, the mining firm said in a ... more

Almaty cost of living lowest among major cities

Kazakhstan’s largest city and business centre Almaty has dropped to last place on the Economist Intelligence Unit’s bi-annual ranking of the ... more

AB InBev sells 54.5% stake in African Coke bottling business for $3.15bn

Anheuser-Busch InBev will sell a 54.5% stake in Africa's largest Coke bottler to Coca-Cola Company for $3.15bn, the two companies said in a joint statement on December 21. The deal is expected to ... more

Register here to continue reading this article and 2 more for free or purchase 12 months full website access including the bne Magazine for just $119/year.

Already a subscriber or registered - click here to recover access.

If you a IntelliNews Pro user - click here to login.

Thank you. Please complete your registration by confirming your email address.
A confirmation email has been sent to the email address you provided.

To continue viewing our content you need to complete the registration process.

Please look for an email that was sent to with the subject line "Confirmation bne IntelliNews access". This email will have instructions on how to complete registration process. Please check in your "Junk" folder in case this communication was misdirected in your email system.

Already a subscriber or registered - click here to recover access.

If you a IntelliNews Pro user - click here to login.

If you have any questions please contact us at sales@intellinews.com

Subscribe to bne IntelliNews website and magazine

Subscribe to bne IntelliNews website and monthly magazine, the leading source of business, economic and financial news and commentary in emerging markets.

Your subscription includes:
  • Full access to the bne content daily news and features on the website
  • Newsletters direct to your mailbox
  • Print and digital subscription to the monthly bne magazine
  • Digital subscription to the weekly bne newspaper

Already a subscriber or registered - click here to recover access.

If you a IntelliNews Pro user - click here to login.

bne IntelliNews
$119 per year

All prices are in US dollars net of applicable taxes.

If you have any questions please contact us at sales@intellinews.com

Register for free to read bne IntelliNews Magazine. You'll receive a free digital subscription.

Already a subscriber or registered - click here to recover access.

If you a IntelliNews Pro user - click here to login.

Thank you. Please complete your registration by confirming your email address.
A confirmation email has been sent to the email address you provided.

IntelliNews Pro offers daily news updates delivered to your inbox and in-depth data reports.
Get the emerging markets newswire that financial professionals trust.

"No day starts for my team without IntelliNews Pro" — UBS

Thank-you for requesting an IntelliNews Pro trial. Our team will be in contact with you shortly.

Dismiss