Harmony Gold mine Kusasalethu in Carletonville. 
Photo: Supplied

JOHANNESBURG - Mining production in South Africa increased 6.90% year-on-year in August, surpassing market consensus of a modest 0.1% gain supported by a surge in global commodity prices in the period.  

The surge in production was underpinned by strong performance in which surged 7.7 percent in August compared to 5.8 percent recorded in July. 

Diamonds production inched up 27.7% in August compared to 16.6% in the previous month, while iron ore which rebounded 9 percent compared to a decline of 5% in the prior month. On a monthly basis, gold mining output went up 5.3%. 

John Ashbourne, an Africa economist at Capital economics on says that August mining production figures suggest that the sector remained strong in the middle of the third quarter.

“This marked the sector’s strongest growth since March. The gold, iron, and diamond sectors made the largest contributions to growth. But output rose across almost the entire mining industry, with copper the only sub-sector in which output fell year-on-year,” Ashbourne says.

Macroeconomics statistics website Trading Economics says that mining production in South Africa averaged -0.05% from 1981 until 2017, reaching an all-time high of 23.20% in October of 2013 and a record low of -18.40% in March of 2016.