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Send  Share  RSS  Twitter  13 Feb 2009

EXPORTS: Cape Needs Emerging Markets


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Trevor Manuel’s annual budget speech forecast a revised GDP growth expectation from the Treasury, traditionally optimistic in its GDP growth forecast,  now down to 1,2% for 2009.

According to Richard Wade, Senior Manager, Wesgro IQ, the research unit at Wesgro,  this is a significant reduction and more in line with other analyst's expectations. Wade continues, “In my opinion, their recovery projections of 3% in 2010 and 4% in 2011 could be on the optimistic side - but at this stage economic forecasting has become somewhat of a guessing game. This also depends on one's take on the impact of increased consumption due to 2010 and inflation coming down.”

However, a time of crisis is also a time of opportunity. Given waning global demand for manufactured products, Western Cape exporters need to consider emerging market opportunities in their export strategies, in addition to their traditional export markets such as the US, UK, Netherlands and Germany.

Wesgro’s recently launched Export Advantage programme is perfectly placed to address this need. Issues of exporter competitiveness now become even more pertinent as exporters compete for reduced trade demand. “Once again, Wesgro assists exporters around issues of competitiveness. South Africa and more importantly, the Western Cape need to improve export performance. Countries such as China and India have seen export growth of 29,5% and 23.3% respectively over the period 2001 – 2006. This compares to South Africa’s growth of 13,7% over the same period” says Wade.

From an investment perspective, Wesgro’s proactive, targeted and focused approach to investment recruitment and facilitation addresses the challenge of lower global FDI flows. Wade adds that, “Wesgro’s recent committed investment performance bears testimony to the success of this approach in the challenging current market conditions.”.

“As mentioned by Minister Manuel in his budget speech, South Africa’s development expenditure in the period ahead will require both improved domestic saving and continued capital inflows. Wesgro strives to play a leading role in facilitating investment in the Western Cape,” he concludes.

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