South Africa Industry January 2017

South Africa

South Africa: Manufacturing output rebounds in January

March 14, 2017

South Africa’s manufacturing production rebounded at the outset of the year, increasing 0.8% year-on-year in January. The result contrasted the 2.0% contraction seen in December and stemmed mainly from a surge in output of basic iron and steel, metal products and machinery. Contributing to the monthly expansion was also higher production for petroleum, chemicals and plastics. Due to the rebound, annual average growth in manufacturing production inched up from 0.8% in December to 1.0% in January.

That said, sequential data do not corroborate the improvement suggested by the annual data. Manufacturing production declined a seasonally-adjusted 0.4% from the previous month in January, which more than offset the 0.2% increase observed in December.

FocusEconomics Consensus Forecasts panelists expect manufacturing to expand 1.0% in 2017, which is up 0.1 percentage points from last month’s estimate. For 2018, the panel expects manufacturing to expand 1.6%.


Author:, Senior Economist

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SouthAfrica Industry January 2017

Note: Year-on-year changes and annual average variation of manufacturing production index in %.
Source: Statistics South Africa (Stat SA) and FocusEconomics calculations.


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