DA leader Mmusi Maimane at a press conference in Cape Town. File picture: Ayanda Ndamane/ African News Agency (ANA)

Johannesburg - The Democratic Alliance (DA) on Tuesday proposed that Parliament urgently debate new, innovative ideas to revive South Africa's economy after it entered into a technical recession following negative growth for six months.

Statistics South Africa said on Tuesday that the country's economy contracted by 0.7 percent in the second quarter of the year, following a revised 2.6 percent shrinkage in the first quarter, therefore slipping into a technical recession.

DA leader Mmusi Maimane said this recession, the second in two years, was an explicit vote of no confidence in the African National Congress (ANC) government, its economic policy direction, and its ability to create jobs and prosperity for all South Africans.

Maimane said the economy was on life-support as a direct result of a corrupt and failing ANC government which has no plan for our economy.

"Today's announcement marks a continuation of the past decade of economic decline brought about by previous ANC governments. There has been no fundamental change to the ANC's approach to the economy," Maimane said.

"It is for this reason I will today write to the Speaker of the National Assembly, Baleka Mbete, requesting an urgent debate of national importance in Parliament on this matter. This will allow a collaborative effort in which all sides of the House can present new, innovative ideas as to how we can reverse this persistent economic decline and get South Africa working again."

StatsSA said the largest negative contributors to growth for the gross domestic product (GDP) in the second quarter were agriculture, transport and trade.

The agriculture, forestry and fishing industry decreased by 29.2 percent and contributed a negative 0.8 percentage points to the change in GDP mainly because of a drop in the production of field crops and horticultural products.

The main positive contributions came from the mining industry and finance, real estate and business services, Stats SA said.

Household final consumption expenditure decreased by 1.3 percent in the second quarter of 2018 contributing a negative 0.8 percentage point to total growth. This was the first quarter-on-quarter decrease since the first quarter of 2016.

African News Agency/ANA