Sep 14, 2012
Low-quality imports affect manufacturersBack
Engineering|Port|Africa|Export|Springwell|Africa|China|South Africa|Port Elizabeth Factory|Lower-priced Finished Products|Lower-priced Imported Products|Machinery|Product|Products|Andrew Ogden|Bushy Botha|Keith Campbell
© Reuse this
“These imports are not the same standard as the materials that would be available from domestic mills, but buyers are currently price conscious as a result of the economic downturn and are not as concerned about quality as they should be.
“We have the capacity to produce these imports locally, which would generate business for domestic mills, as well as employment,” he states.
Sawa has expressed concern about the impact of lower-priced imported products since the South African government abolished import duties on wire in 2006.
The abolition of these import duties has resulted in local wire users being able to import duty-free and cheaper-priced wire from vendors such as those in China.
In 2008, the chairperson of Sawa, Bushy Botha, told Engineering News that South Africa was one of only a few countries that had duty-free imports on wire and that imports had increased noticeably since these duties were abolished.
“Although the reason for the abolishment was to lower costs for South African consumers, there could have been more local production if there had been more protection,” he said at the time.
Campbell notes that, while imports dropped during the first quarter of this year, this was the result of a decrease in demand for domestic materials, owing to economic factors.
He adds that this cannot be seen as an improvement in the import problem.
Further, he points out that Sawa members continue to look towards export markets to improve their sustainability and competitiveness, as the local wire industry has excess capacity as a result of low domestic demand.
Meanwhile, Spring manufacturer Springwell technical director Andrew Ogden believes the only way for companies to ensure competitiveness in the local wire industry is to acquire machinery that can deliver the high volumes of commonly used wire often demanded at low prices.
Springwell has invested in machinery, which allows it to be more competitive and widen its product offering as well as improve its ability to produce formed wire for various applications.
Ogden adds that the company plans to further invest in machinery to add to the product forming capabilities of its Port Elizabeth factory.
He points out that, while the local manufacture of speciality wire could create jobs in South Africa, demand for such products is too low to make it economically viable for companies to invest in technologies to produce speciality goods.
Currently, commonly used wires are readily available in South Africa, while speciality wires have to be imported when a solution is needed for specific purposes.
Campbell says, in South Africa, wire manufacturers and consumers use wire for low-tech products, such as fencing materials and fasteners, which is why there is limited local demand for speciality wires.
“Domestic volumes are too small for wire producers to manufacture speciality wires,” Campbell emphasises, adding that raw material availability is also curbed, as manufacturers are not interested in producing small quantities of specialised materials.
Edited by: Chanel de Bruyn© Reuse this Comment Guidelines (150 word limit)
Other Wire, Rope, Sling and Chain News
Swiss-based inspection, verification, testing and certification services provider Société Générale de Surveillance (SGS-SA) was awarded a contract in February to provide statutory inspection services and training on lifting equipment for Egypt-based engineering,...
Recent Research Reports
Steel 2015: A review of South Africa's steel sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Steel 2015 report provides an overview of the key developments in the global steel industry and particularly of South Africa’s steel sector over the past year, including details of production and consumption, as well as the country's primary carbon...
Projects in Progress 2015 - First Edition (PDF Report)
In fact, this edition of Creamer Media’s Projects in Progress 2015 supplement tracks developments taking place under the Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme, which has had four bidding rounds. It appears to remain a shining light on the...
Electricity 2015: A review of South Africa's electricity sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Electricity 2015 report provides an overview of State-owned power utility Eskom and independent power producers, as well as electricity planning, transmission, distribution and the theft thereof, besides other issues.
Construction 2015: A review of South Africa’s construction sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Construction 2015 Report examines South Africa’s construction industry over the past 12 months. The report provides insight into the business environment; the key participants in the sector; local construction demand; geographic diversification;...
Liquid Fuels 2014 - A review of South Africa's Liquid Fuels sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Liquid Fuels 2014 Report examines these issues, focusing on the business environment, oil and gas exploration, the country’s feedstock supplies, the development of South Africa’s biofuels industry, fuel pricing, competition in the sector, the...
Water 2014: A review of South Africa's water sector (PDF Report)
Creamer Media’s Water 2014 report considers the aforementioned issues, not only in the South African context, but also in the African and global context, and examines the issues of water and sanitation, water quality and the demand for water, among others.
This Week's Magazine
Forest products group Sappi has confirmed the selection of its 25 MW biomass-to-power project, to be erected at its Ngodwana mill, in Mpumalanga, as a preferred bidder under the South African government’s Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement...
Information and communications technology (ICT) distributor DCC is making Windows- and Android-operating systems tablets available through retailers and education equipment suppliers to provide school children with affordable, high-performance education tools. The...
Another cement manufacturer is set to enter the Ugandan market, raising hopes that prices will come down and spur growth in the construction industry. National Cement, a Kenyan manufacturer, has unveiled plans to invest $195-million in a new manufacturing plant in...
With growth rates exceeding that in the developed world – at an average of between 4% and 5% between 2002 and 2014 – African countries provide investors with ample reason to tap into booming consumer demand says Manufacturing Circle executive director Coenraad...
The South African Chamber of Commerce and Industry’s (Sacci’s) Business Confidence Index (BCI) decreased by 3.7 index points month-on-month to 89.1 in March.