South African Government’s 2013/2014 Budget
Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan announced his budget for 2013/2014 in parliament on 27th February.
Economic growth is expected to be subdued, mainly because of continued weak international demand, particularly from Europe. The growth rates anticipated are 2.7% in 2013, 3.5% in 2014 and 3.8% in 2015. It is generally assumed that about 7% annual growth is necessary to substantially reduce the ca. 25% employment rate.
Gordhan said the government plans to restrain government spending but will increase social spending for South Africa’s poorest. He predicted the 2013 budget deficit will be 4.6 per cent of GDP, and just over 6% in the next three years. Government debt, now just over 36%, is expected to increase to just over 40% by 2016.
The 2013-14 budget is considered the start of the implementation of the National Development Plan, with more investment in infrastructure, education and health service. Inflation is expected to remain around 5.5% in coming years, which is within the target range of 3 to 6%. The South African Rand has been under pressure the last few months.
Date: 28th February 2013
South Africa in 35th place worldwide for ease of doing business.
In Doing Business 2012 South Africa gained one position in the comparison between 184 countries, ranking 35th. The annual Doing Business Report is a publication of the World Bank and the International Finance Corporation that benchmarks business regulation in 183 economies worldwide.South Africa ranks significantly higher than any other African country and significantly higher than the other BRICS countries.
Major changes in South Africa’s ranking were:
Starting a business: from 74th in 2011 to 44th in 2012.
Registering property: from 90th to 76th position
Paying taxes: from 18th to 44th position.
In getting credit South Africa scored the top position, as in 2011.
Date: 8th March 2013
Inflation Rate at 6.1%
The inflation rate year on year to December 2011 was just over the Reserve Bank's inflation target range, at 6.1%. Core inflation remained well within the target range, with little sign of secondary inflation.
Unemployment stood at 25% in the third quarter of 2011. In the 12 months up to September 2011 393,000 were created, 40% of which were state jobs. The number of people without employment decreased by 96,000 in the third quarter of 2011.
Date: 20th January 2012
In December 2011 Business Unity South Africa (Busa) says it expects South Africa's economy to grow by 3% in 2012 in a best-case scenario. In January the South African Reserve Bank predicted a growth of 2.8% for 2012, and 3.8% in 2013.
Busa deputy CEO Raymond Parsons said that, while this was positive growth, it was insufficient to meet South Africa's socio-economic challenges, especially given the downside risk. "At this rate, it will take South Africa much longer to reach its job creation and other socio-economic targets."
According to Busa's impressions, corporate balance sheets were currently strong and clean. "It is necessary to underpin the role of business and investor confidence in order to promote economic recovery," said Parsons.
Mail & Guardian, http://www.statssa.gov.za/keyindicators/keyindicators.asp
Date: 20th January 2012
Cape Town has been appointed World Design Capital 2014
For Cape Town, the appointment comes exactly two decades after reaching democracy. “2014, then, is the moment when the past and the future will come together for Cape Town, in contemplation and in action,” stated Executive Mayor of Cape Town, Ms. Patricia de Lille. “It is a reflection of how the city has socially and physically reinvented itself.”
Cape Town’s vision of design is based on socially responsible design, sustainability and innovation. As part of their bid, the theme “Live Design. Transform Life” was introduced in support of Cape Town’s objective to focus on enhancing the city’s infrastructure to make it a more liveable African City.
Date: 26th October 2011
South Africa 52nd of 142 countries in World Economic Forum competitiveness index 2012-2013
South Africa moved down 2 places in the WEF Competitiveness index to 52nd of 142.
South Africa’s performance was particularly strong on financial market development, where it became 3rd in the world. Further it scored well on market size (25th), goods market efficiency (32nd), business sophistication (38th), and Innovation (42nd).
The most problematic factors for doing business were: Inadequately educated workforce, Restrictive labor regulations and Inefficient government bureaucracy.
More information can be found on www.weforum.org/issues/global-competitiveness
Date: September 2012
South Africa 50th of 142 countries in World Economic Forum
competitiveness index 2011-2012
South Africa moved up 4 places in the WEF Competitiveness index to 50th. It is the highest ranked country in sub-Saharan Africa (Mauritius being second, Rwanda 3rd and Botswana 4th) and the second highest of the BRICS countries (China being first, in 26th position world wide)
South Africa’s performance was particularly strong on financial market development, where it became 4th in the world. Further it scored strongly on market size (25th), goods market efficiency (32nd), business sophistication (38th), and Innovation (41st).
South Africa’s lowest scores were on business costs of crime and violence (136th), health and primary education (131st), labour market efficiency (95th), technological readiness (76th) and higher education and training (75th).
More information can be found on http://www.weforum.org/issues/global-competitiveness
Date: 8th September 2011
Cape Town shortlisted for World Design Capital 2014
Cape Town is one of the three cities shortlisted for the biennial title World Design Capital 2014. The other cities are Dublin and Bilbao. In October 2012 the final winner of the title will be announced. In 2012 Helsinki will be World Design Capital. Under Publications you will find an article in which Dorine van Namen and Henk Jochims explore Cape Town as a design city, published in Maandblad Zuid-Afrika in the Netherlands, with an English translation.
Date: 1st July 2011
South Africa’s Gross Domestic Product grew by 4.8% in 1st quarter 2011
The seasonally adjusted real GDP at market prices for the first quarter of 2011 increased by an annualised rate of 4,8 per cent compared with an increase of 4,5 per cent (revised from an increase of 4,4 per cent) during the fourth quarter of 2010. The contributors to the increase in economic activity for the first quarter of 2011 were the manufacturing industry (2,2 percentage points), finance, real estate and business services (1,0 percentage points), the wholesale, retail, motor trade and accommodation industry (0,5 of a percentage point) and the transport, storage and communication industry (0,3 of a percentage point). The construction industry contributed (0,0 of a percentage point) for six consecutive quarters.
Date: 3rd June 2011
Cape Quarter Life Style Village gets design award
IE Magazine awarded Cape Quarter Lifestyle Village the Best of the Best 2011 award for architecture and interior design of shopping malls:"The developers have taken the lead in using the old industrial buildings, warehouses and service yards that encompassed the block of Somerset Rd, Dixon, Jarvis and Napier Streets to create a destination of choice. Add to this a keen sense of the environment, design and recycling plus a generous use of space and the creators of this build have brought together a unique shopping experience at the forefront of urban design. The design and ambience is also in keeping with the surrounding streets - no mean feat since each street has its very own design qualities.
Date: 3rd June 2011
Call for entries Frame Moooi Award 2012
Call for entries Frame Moooi Award 2012 - an opportunity for young designers. Furniture and/or lamps that have been custome-designed for a specific interior. Both product and interior have to be completed between 1 January 2010 and September 2011.
Date: 1st June 2012 - Click here to visit website www.framemoooi.com