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Citrus and cars: The hidden gems in the SA economy

702 host Karima Brown speaks to Minister of Economic Development Ebrahim Patel about how South Africa came to be the largest car manufacturer in Africa.

FILE: South Africa is the largest car manufacturer on the African continent. Picture: AFP.

JOHANNESBURG – South Africa is the largest car manufacturer on the continent.

Gauteng is the sixth largest economy in Africa and South Africa is the world’s second-largest citrus exporter.

702 host Karima Brown speaks to Minister of Economic Development Ebrahim Patel about the hidden gems in South Africa's economy and how the country came to be the largest car manufacturer in Africa.

Patel said on Thursday South Africa produced three million cars in the last five years.

On how many people the car manufacturing sector employs in South Africa, Patel said it employs more than 100,000 workers; a significant number of them in car assembly and the making of components.

Patel says South Africa is a significant manufacturer of the catalytic converter, adding that the country has about 12% of the world’s production of converters.

“We’re the biggest exporter to Germany. The car manufacturer, as well as the components made in the country, generates about R164 billion in foreign exchange for South Africa,” said Patel.

For more listen to the audio

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