South Africa’s economy rebounded in the third quarter of 2020 (July–September), coinciding with the easing of COVID-19 lockdown restrictions.
All industries recorded an increase in economic activity compared with the second quarter, with manufacturing, trade and mining leading the charge.
Businesses were supported by an increase in both exports and household spending.
According to Africa’s most industrialised economy’s Statistics Office, Gross Domestic Product (GDP) grew by an estimated 13.5% in the third quarter, giving an annualised growth rate of 66.1%.
The agency said manufacturing, trade and mining were the biggest drivers of growth in the third quarter.
The manufacturing industry rose at an annualised rate of 210.2%, mostly driven by increases in the production of basic metal products, petroleum, vehicles, and food and beverages.
Trade was the second biggest positive contributor to growth, increasing at an annualised rate of 137%. There was a rise in wholesale, retail and motor trade sales, supported by increased consumer spending. The jump in mining activity was driven mostly by increased production of platinum group metals, iron ore, gold and manganese ore. The industry was also supported by a rise in exports.
Despite all industries recording positive results in the third quarter, agriculture and government are the only two that have so far weathered the effects of the pandemic.
Lillian Jijingi, Statistics South Africa