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SA records GDP of -0.3% in the fourth quarter of 2016

The main contributors to the negative GDP growth rate were the mining and quarrying industry and the manufacturing industry.

The Sandton CBD in Johannesburg. Picture: Aki Anastasiou/EWN

PRETORIA - StatsSA has announced that the South African economy contracted by 0.3% in the fourth quarter of last year, contributing to the marginal growth of just 0.3% for 2016.

StatsSA’s Michael Manamela says 2016 was marked by two declining quarters which contributed to slow overall growth.

The main contributors to the negative GDP growth rate were the mining and quarrying industry and the manufacturing industry. Mining and quarrying decreased by 11.5% in the fourth quarter. This was largely the result of lower production in coal, gold and 'other' metal ores (including platinum).

Manufacturing decreased by 3.1% largely as a result of lower production in the manufacturing of food and beverages, manufacturing of petroleum, chemical products, rubber and plastic products and manufacturing of motor vehicles, parts and accessories and other transport equipment.

The agriculture, forestry and fishing industry has been in decline for eight consecutive quarters.

The largest positive contributors were the trade, catering and accommodation industry and finance, real estate and business services, which increased by 2.1% and 1.6% respectively, and each contributed 0.3 of a percentage point to GDP growth.