KZN SOPA: SA's economy stuck in low-growth cycle
Durban - KwaZulu-Natal Premier Sihle Zikalala on Wednesday used his State of the Province address to talk about the country’s economic crisis, saying that the economy was stuck in a low-growth cycle.
Statistics SA on Tuesday announced that gross domestic product (GDP) had contracted in the fourth quarter of 2019, sending the country into a technical recession.
“The global economy is under strain. The spread of the coronavirus is threatening the long expected rebound in global trade. “Rising geopolitical tensions could disrupt global oil supply, hurt sentiment, and weaken already fragile business investment.”
He said trade policy uncertainty and pressures in key emerging market economies continue to weigh on global economic activity particularly for manufactured products.
Zikalala also raised the issue of Brexit especially with South Africa’s strong ties with the UK.
“The ANC-led government is acutely aware of our responsibility to our provincial population of 11.3 million people - with a significant rural component and deeply reflective of our triple challenges of poverty, unemployment and inequality,” Zikalala said.
High unemployment was also hampering growth, Zikalala said, with 29.1% of working-age people jobless
“Despite this, we are encouraged that we are one of four provinces that show employment growth with a net gain of 39,000 jobs. These latest numbers stress the need for government to speedily implement policies that will inspire confidence and encourage investment,” he said.