R/€ = 15.20Change: -0.18
R/$ = 14.36Change: -0.21
Au 1065.55 $/ozChange: -6.50
Pt 845.50 $/ozChange: 0.00
Note: Search is limited to the most recent 250 articles. Set date range to access earlier articles.
Where? With... When?

And must exclude these words...
Close Main Search
Close Main Login
My Profile News Alerts Newsletters Logout Close Main Profile
Agriculture   Automotive   Chemicals   Competition Policy   Construction   Defence   Economy   Electricity   Energy   Environment   ICT   Metals   Mining   Science and Technology   Services   Trade   Transport & Logistics   Water  
What's On Press Office Tenders Suppliers Directory Research Jobs Announcements Letters About Us
RSS Feed
Article   Comments   Other News   Research   Magazine  
Apr 20, 2011

Business and govt alignment key to reaping benefits of Brics

Panel of experts analysis on how South African business can take advantage of the enabling political environment that came with the country joining the Brics grouping. Camerawork: Nicholas Boyd, Editing: Darlene Creamer.
© Reuse this

The South African government and business community need to closer align themselves to fully leverage the economic opportunities that come with belonging to the Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa (Brics) bloc of emerging economies, a panel of experts said at a Frontier Advisory post-Brics summit discussion.

South African Institute for International Affairs (Saiia) CEO Elizabeth Sidiropoulos said that South African business and government needed to start working as a united force, much like the other Brics members, to position itself as a competitive, but also a cooperative, force in the global market, especially in the growing African market.

“We need to really work on developing SA Inc, to increase our competitiveness and improve productivity. Only then can we achieve objectives set out by the South African government to reduce unemployment in the country.”

Almost a decade after Goldman Sachs economist Jim O'Neil coined the term Bric, based on the size, population and current and forecast economic growth of these countries, South Africa was invited to join this exclusive club, or as Frontier Advisory CEO Dr Martyn Davies now refers to them, the E5 (emerging five).

Many commentators, including O’Neil, did not agree with South Africa’s inclusion in this grouping, but Webber Wentzel partner Peter Leon believed that South Africa’s invitation was “all about the minerals”.

“South Africa is sitting on the world’s biggest set of mineral resource with reserves worth $2,3-trillion. Further, in the context of the rest of mineral-rich Africa, South Africa has the most developed infrastructure and the deepest capital markets.

“As far as an appropriate springboard into Africa goes, South Africa is the only game in town,” said Leon.

However, he emphasised that if the country really wanted to leverage its position as a gateway to the rest of the continent, it seriously needed to consider eliminating exchange and capital controls.

“Issues such as trade liberalisation, and even free trade agreements, between other members of the Brics, as well as other African countries need to come to fruition.”

Davies said that while South Africa, and the rest of Africa, would greatly benefit from additional investment and trade from the other Brics members, African countries also needed to start trading in and among themselves.

“Trade between African countries is currently at an average of about 15%, and often only in the single digits, whereas trade between Asian countries stands at around 60%, while Europe also intra-trades at a rate of about 60%.”

He added that the ‘s’ in Brics, should not just be allocated to South Africa alone, but should really be seen as the whole Southern African Development Community, which boasts a population of half-a-billion people. Even beyond that, Davies said that South Africa should be the voice of Africa as far as the Brics grouping and other economic groupings went.

From 2001 to 2010, trade among the Brics member countries grew at a yearly rate of 28% to reach nearly $230-billion.

The five economies also performed outstandingly during the global financial crisis with their combined gross domestic product (GDP) growth accounting for 18% of the global GDP in 2010.

Deloitte director Mark Casey said that these economies would be the engine rooms for growth going into the future. It was predicted that Brazil, China, India, Russia, Germany and the US would form the top six economies by 2050.

“This presents a great opportunity for South Africa, as part of the four strongest growing economies in the world, to take advantage of this opportunity through cooperation and collaboration with the other Brics members.”

Edited by: Mariaan Webb
Creamer Media Senior Researcher and Deputy Editor Online
© Reuse this Comment Guidelines (150 word limit)
Other Economy News
Updated 1 hour 20 minutes ago A slow and gradual normalisation of US monetary policy, on its own, does not need to be negative for South Africa, the South African Reserve Bank's deputy governor Francois Groepe said on Friday. In a speech posted on the central bank website, Groepe also said flows...
Updated 5 hours ago A public–private partnership (PPP) between electronics manufacturer Samsung Electronics, the Manufacturing, Engineering and Related Services Sector Education and Training Authority (Merseta) and the Department of Higher Education and Training is hoping to plug the...
City of Ekurhuleni executive mayor Mondli Gungubele earlier this month officially named the city’s bus rapid transit (BRT) system, Harambee.
Latest News
South African Reserve Bank governor Lesetja Kganyago
Updated 46 minutes ago South African Reserve Bank governor Lesetja Kganyago believes the reaction of the rand to a possible hike in interest rates by the US Federal Reserve (Fed) in mid-December could be “exaggerated”, but says the bank has no plans intervene in support of the currency....
Updated 1 hour 14 minutes ago A slow and gradual normalisation of US monetary policy, on its own, does not need to be negative for South Africa, the South African Reserve Bank's deputy governor Francois Groepe said on Friday. In a speech posted on the central bank website, Groepe also said flows...
Updated 2 hours 18 minutes ago Nigeria's Oando plans to build a gas plant for up to $350-million as it focuses on integrating gas production with its supply business, the head of the gas and power unit said on Thursday. Bolaji Osunsanya, MD of Oando Gas and Power said the plant, with a capacity to...
Recent Research Reports
Water 2015: A review of South Africa's water sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Water 2015 Report considers the aforementioned issues, not only in the South African context but also in the African and global context in terms of supply and demand, water stress and insecurity, and access to water and sanitation, besides others.
Input Sector Review: Pumps 2015 (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s 2015 Input Sector Review on Pumps provides an overview of South Africa’s pumps industry with particular focus on pump manufacture and supply, aftermarket services, marketing strategies, local and export demand, imports, sector support, investment...
Liquid Fuels 2015: A review of South Africa's liquid fuels sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Liquid Fuels 2015 Report examines these issues in the context of South Africa’s business environment; oil and gas exploration; fuel pricing; the development of the country’s biofuels industry; the logistics of transporting liquid fuels; and...
Road and Rail 2015: A review of South Africa's road and rail sectors (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Road and Rail 2015 report examines South Africa’s road and rail transport system, with particular focus on the size and state of the country’s road and rail infrastructure and network, the funding and maintenance of these respective networks, and...
Defence 2015: A review of South Africa's defence sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Coal 2015 report examines South Africa’s coal industry with regards to the business environment, the key participants in the sector, local demand, export sales and coal logistics, projects being undertaken by the large and smaller participants in the...
Real Economy Year Book 2015 (PDF Report)
There are very few beacons of hope on South Africa’s economic horizon. Economic growth is weak, unemployment is rising, electricity supply is insufficient to meet demand and/or spur growth, with poor prospects for many of the commodities mined and exported. However,...
This Week's Magazine
The BMW Group will invest R6-billion at BMW Group South Africa’s (BMW SA’s) Rosslyn plant to produce the next-generation X3 sports-activity vehicle (SAV) for the local and export markets. Rosslyn will continue production of the current 3 Series through its lifecycle,...
The lack of consequences for poor performance and transgressions on the part of contractors remains a significant hurdle to tackling South Africa’s service delivery challenges, delegates heard at the Consulting Engineers South Africa Infrastructure Indaba, on...
City of Ekurhuleni executive mayor Mondli Gungubele earlier this month officially named the city’s bus rapid transit (BRT) system, Harambee.
NICK CHRISTODOULOU As about 58% of data stored by organisations is dark, they must identify this dark data to expose risks and valuable information
About 58% of unstructured data stored by companies is dark data, which means that the value or regulatory importance of the data has not been determined. Subsequently, most of the stored data add costs, rather than increasing revenue or reduce regulatory risks, says...
BRIAN VERWEY Effective management, review and administration of non-core elements can improve business operations and increase revenue and decrease unforeseen risks
Effective logistics, import/export and manufacturing consulting services require detailed industry knowledge and experience, but can add significant value to these industries by providing expert advice on various technical elements in their value chains, says...
Alert Close
Embed Code Close
Research Reports Close
Research Reports are a product of the
Research Channel Africa. Reports can be bought individually or you can gain full access to all reports as part of a Research Channel Africa subscription.
Find Out More Buy Report
Engineering News
Completely Re-Engineered
Experience it now. Click here
*website to launch in a few weeks
Subscribe Now for $96 Close
Subscribe Now for $96