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South African Business 2019 edition

  • Text
  • Infrastructure
  • Africa
  • Banking
  • Engineering
  • Construction
  • Trade
  • Economy
  • Zones
  • Energy
  • Investment
  • Invest
  • Business
  • Africa
  • African
  • Sector
  • Economic
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The 2019 edition of South African Business is the seventh edition of this annual guide to business and investment in South Africa. Regular pages cover all the main economic sectors of the South African economy and give a snapshot of each of the country’s provincial economies. Feature articles on topical issues such as Special Economic Zones and African trade provide unique insights, together with comprehensive overviews of critical economic sectors. Other special features focus on the exciting new possibilities in renewable energy, airports as engines of regional growth and the maritime sector as an entirely new prospect for South African entrepreneurs and businesses. South African Business is complemented by nine regional publications covering the business and investment environment in each of South Africa’s provinces. The e-book editions can be viewed at



SPECIAL FEATURE FACT FILE: REPUBLIC OF SOUTH AFRICA President: Cyril Ramaphosa (African National Congress) Capitals: Pretoria/Tshwane (administrative, seat of government), Cape Town (legislative), Bloemfontein (judicial). Time: GMT+2 Population: 55.91-million (2016) Size: 1 220 813km² Major languages: South Africa has 11 official languages but the main language of government and business is English. Zulu, Xhosa and Afrikaans are widely spoken. Religion: There is no state religion. The majority of the population are Christian but many other religions are followed such as Islam, Jewish and Hindu. Currency: rand (100 cents). R15.14 = (September 2018) Political system: South Africa is a republic with an executive president who is appointed by the political party that wins a majority in parliamentary elections. There are three tiers of government: national, provincial and local but the revenueraising capacity of the latter two spheres is limited. Allocations for health and education for example, are made by national government and then administrated by provinces. Eight of South Africa’s nine provinces are run by premiers from the African National Congress; the Western Cape province and the city of Cape Town are administered by the Democratic Alliance. The third level of government is local. In 2016 the DA came to power in three of South Africa’s biggest cities, supported by other parties such as the Congress of the People and the United Democratic Front. The Freedom Front said it would support these anti-ANC alliances on a vote-by-vote basis, but it would not sign up to a coalition. In 2018 the FF tried to unseat the DA in Nelson Mandela Bay (Port Elizabeth) and Tshwane (Pretoria) but would not form a formal alliance with the ANC. Legal system: South Africa is a constitutional state with separation of powers between the legal and executive authorities. All laws must pass muster with the Constitutional Court which is the ultimate court of appeal on legislation. South Africa’s legal system is based on Roman Dutch law. Infrastructure: Ports of Cape Town, Saldanha, Mossel Bay, Port Elizabeth, East London, Durban and Richards Bay. International airports at Cape Town, Ekurhuleni and Durban and domestic airports at all major cities. Special Economic Zones (SEZs) have been established at major ports and are in the process of being set up at inland destinations. South Africa has 34 000km of railway track and half of the country’s road network is paved. Most of South Africa’s power is generated by coal-fired power stations run by the state utility Eskom. A vigorous programme to encourage private investment in renewable energy began in 2012, suffered a setback in 2016 but was reinstated under the new administration of President Ramaphosa in 2018. Resources: Platinum, gold, iron ore, chromium, vanadium, manganese, alumino-silicates, coal, copper, diamonds, uranium, zirconium. GDP: Nominal GDP estimated at R1 208-billion for Q4 2017, R29-billion more than in Q3 2017 (StatsSA). Exports: Precious and semi-precious stones, mineral products, base metals, vehicles, machinery, chemical products, vegetable products, fruits, foodstuffs and beverages, paper and pulp. Main export markets: China, USA, Japan, Germany, UK, India. Membership of BRICS will see focus on Brazil, Russia, India and China. Imports: Machinery, mineral products, vehicles, chemicals, original equipment, base metals, plastics and rubber, textiles, optical and medical, foodstuffs and beverages. Main import markets: China, Germany, USA, Japan, Saudi Arabia, Iran, UK, India, France, Nigeria. 21 SOUTH AFRICAN BUSINESS 2019

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