SA entering technical recession again not a surprise, says Ramaphosa
President Cyril Ramaphosa said that the poor growth figures released today were not pleasing, but said that the signs that the economy was struggling were evident for some time.
CAPE TOWN - President Cyril Ramaphosa said that it should come as no surprise that South Africa had once again entered a technical recession.
Stats SA on Tuesday this morning reported that the economy shrank by 1.4% in the last quarter of 2019, making for two successive quarters of negative growth.
Ramaphosa said that the poor growth figures released today were not pleasing, but said that the signs that the economy was struggling were evident for some time.
He was speaking during an engagement at Tuynhuys in Cape Town with the SA National Editors’ Forum (Sanef) and the parliamentary Press Gallery Association this afternoon.
More grim tidings for the economy, but President Cyril Ramaphosa said that we should not be shocked.
"Poor growth figures for the last quarter are not pleasing, but at the same time they could not have come as a shock or a surprise to us because the signs were there."
Ramaphosa cited load-shedding and its impact on production in manufacturing and for trade.
"Agriculture slumped down the greatest and that could also be ascribed to the drought that many parts of our country have been experiencing, but I think more importantly, just business and consumer confidence have been negatively affected as well. So, a combination of all these factors have led to the negative growth, which is 1.4% in the past quarter."
Globally, the economic outlook was weaker, with the coronavirus threatening to have a major impact on trade, travel and health systems.
Ramaphosa said that this was no time to sit back and do nothing and that there must be sharpened focus on the reforms the government had embarked upon.