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JOHANNESBURG – The Black Business Council (BBC) welcomes the South African Reserve Bank’s Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) decision to keep the repurchase (repo) rate unchanged at 6.75 percent as this will bring a much-needed relief for consumers, especially in the context of a low economic growth with high unemployment rate.

Rates were last hiked in the last quarter of 2018 (November 2018) when the MPC introduced a 25-basis point hike that raised the rate to the current 6.75 percent. 

“We welcome the decision though we would have preferred and expected a reduction on the repo rate, in view of the falling rate of inflation and the economy in need of a boost. This decision offers breathing room to our members, who are in the main small, medium and micro-sized enterprises (SMMEs) with short and long-term capital loans. As such, we must commend the SARB’s decision in the midst of inflationary pressures that have been forecasted in the months ahead.” says BBC President Sandile Zungu. 

The first quarter of the year has been particularly taxing on the pockets of citizens with three consecutive fuel hikes and increases in electricity tariffs which have taken a heavy toll on the consumers. 

“The unchanged repo rate will give government alongside business, labour and community the necessary window to implement mitigating reforms to address our slow growing economy” concluded Zungu.