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BBP-syfers beklemtoon landbousektor as ruggraat van die ekonomie | GDP numbers emphasises agriculture as the backbone of the economy

8 September 2020

English to follow:

Die Bruto Binnelandse produk (BBP) -syfers wat vandag deur Statestieke SA vrygestel is dui op ‘n afname van 51% in die tweede kwartaal van 2020. Hierdie vierde agtereenvolgende afname sedert die tweede kwartaal van 2019 het die Suid-Afrikaanse ekonomie in ‘n resessie gedompel.

“Dit is belangrik om te besef dat die Suid-Afrikaanse ekonomie alreeds in ‘n resessie was voordat die regering die inperking aangekondig het. Die inkrimping in die tweede kwartaal van 2020 was nie as gevolg van die Covid-19-pandemie as sodanig nie, maar eerder weens die inperkingregulasies wat deur die regering afgedwing is. Die inperkingregulasies was van die strengste ter wêreld en het ook menige ander bedrywe uiters nadelig geraak,” sê Christo van der Rheede, adjunk uitvoerende direkteur van Agri SA.

Volgens Statestieke SA, het die landbousektor met 15,1% gegroei as gevolg van ‘n toename in akkerbou-, tuinbou- en diereproduksie. Hierdie sektor was die enigste positiewe bydraer tot die BBP, met ‘n bydrae van 0,3 persentasiepunte in die tweede kwartaal van 2020.

Volgens Van der Rheede, was die landbousektor gelukkig deurdat dit aangewys is as ‘n noodsaaklike diens. “Ons is baie dankbaar hiervoor. Dit het gehelp om voedselsekerheid in ons land te versterk.”

Die inperkingregulasies het menige belanghebbendes oor verskeie bedrywe heen gedwing om saam te werk om die uiters moeilike omstandighede waarin alle Suid-Afrikaners hul bevind het aan te spreek. Die sektor kon hierin slaag danksy gesamentlike pogings en konstruktiewe skakeling met die regering.

“Wat ons wel tydens die pandemie geleer het is dat ons uitdagings op privaat- en openbare sektor- en selfs plaasvlak, gesamentlik kon aanspreek. Agri SA het ingegryp in verskeie opsigte tot voordeel van die landbou en die handel in noodsaaklike produkte. Lede kon voortgaan om gebruik te maak van helikopters vir anti-stropery aktiwiteite en kon wildprodukte vervoer. Knelpunte by hawens is ook opgelos deur middel van konstruktiewe skakeling met die Transnet-leierskap.

Ons het dit moontlik gemaak vir ons lede om goedere en dienste oor provinsiale en metro-grense heen te lewer. Boere kon plaasgereedskap bekom vir noodsaaklike instandhouding en toegang verkry tot noodsaaklike roustowwe vir die vervaardiging van landbouprodukte. Ons het ook daarin geslaag om die produksie van verskeie landboukommoditeite onder die inperkingregulasies ingesluit te kry, byvoorbeeld wol, gars, bosbou, volstruis, katoen, ens. Die oes van druiwe, bierproduksie en wynuitvoere is ook heringestel gedurende die inperking.

“Ons bedank graag ons lede en die betrokke belanghebbendes wat saamgewerk het om kritieke tekortkominge in die regulasies spoedig aan te spreek. Almal was gewillig om saam te werk ten opsigte van belangrike aangeleenthede, en dit is iets wat ons met ons saam kan neem in die toekoms.”

Die BBP-syfers het weereens die belangrike rol wat landbou in ons ekonomie speel beklemtoon. Die landbousektor is inherent onderling gekoppel aan en sentraal tot menige ander bedrywe en hul aktiwiteite.

“Die landbousektor is die enigste sektor binne die Suid-Afrikaanse ekonomie wat tydens die inperkingsfase as gevolg van Covid-19 in Suid-Afrika positiewe groeisyfers kon aantoon. Landbou behoort erkenning te kry vir hierdie vermoë om ‘n toleransie te hê ten opsigte van hierdie inperking en het ‘n positiewe bydrae gemaak tot die land se ekonomie. In plaas daarvan dat politici hierdie vermoë van landbou koester word die sektor eerder uitgelewer aan allerhande politieke retoriek wat onsekerhede skep en verdere afbreuk maak ten opsigte van sy vermoë om ekonomies te groei. Beleidsekerheid sal bydrae tot verdere ekonomiese groei en kan landbou se potensiaal verder ontwikkel en die politieke arena sal dit moet besef en toepas,” aldus Nicol Jansen, voorsitter van Agri SA se Sentrum van Uitnemendheid: Ekonomie & Handel.

Navrae:

Christo van der Rheede

Adjunk Uitvoerende Direkteur: Agri SA

Nicol Jansen

Voorsitter van Agri SA se Sentrum van Uitnemendheid: Ekonomie & Handel

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 The Gross Domestic Product (GDP) numbers released by Stats SA today, indicates a decline of 51% in the second quarter of 2020. This fourth consecutive quarter decline since the second quarter of 2019, catapulted South Africa’s economy into a recession.

“It is important to realise that the South African economy was already in a recession before the lockdown was implemented by the government. The contraction in GDP in the second quarter of 2020 was not due to the outbreak of the COVID-19 virus itself, but rather due to the lockdown regulations that were enforced by the government. The lockdown regulations are among the strictest regulations in the world bringing down many other industries to their knees,” said Christo van der Rheede, deputy executive director of Agri SA.

According to Stats SA, due to increased production of field crops and horticultural and animal products, the agriculture sector expanded by 15.1% This industry was the only positive contributor contributing 0,3 of percentage points to GDP during the second quarter of 2020.

According to Van der Rheede the agricultural sector was very fortunate in that it was declared an essential services. “For that, we are very grateful. It helped to strenthen food security in our country.”

The lockdown regulations forced many stakeholders across various industries to work together to address vital issues that affected all South Africans. It is through collective efforts and constructive engagement with government that the sector could overcome obstacles.

“What we have learned from the pandemic is that together we can overcome challenges at public sector, private sector or even at farm level. Agri SA intervened in several important aspects with regards to agriculture and the trading of essential goods. Members could continue to use helicopters for anti-poaching operations and they could move game. Blockages at harbours were also resolved through constructive engagement with Transnet leadership.

We have enabled our members to move goods and services across provinces and metropolitan districts. Farmers could get hold of farming equipment required to do essential maintenance and get access to essential raw agriculture materials needed to manufacture agriculture products. We were also able to add the production of numerous agriculture commodities to the lockdown regulations such as wool, barley, forestry, ostrich, cotton and many more. The harvesting of grapes, production of beer and export of wine were also reinstated during the lockdown. We want to thank all our members and relevant stakeholders for working together to resolve critical and timely shortcomings in the regulations. Everyone was willing to collaborate on important issues and that is something we can take with us into the future.”

The GDP numbers once again emphasise the important role agriculture play in our economy. Agriculture is deeply interconnected and central to many other industries and their operations.

“The agricultural industry is the only sector within the South African economy that succeeded in recording positive growth figures during the Covid-19 lockdown and deserves recognition for its ability to survive and make a positive contribution to the economy during this time. Instead of appreciating this contribution, politicians have used all types of political rhetoric which creates uncertainty and further detracts from the country’s ability to grow economically. Policy certainty will contribute to further economic growth and could help to develop the potential of the agricultural sector. The political arena should take note of this and act accordingly”, added Nicol Jansen, chaiman of the centre of excellence Economics and Trade at Agri SA.

Enquiries:

Christo van der Rheede

Deputy Executive Director: Agri SA

Nicol Jansen

Agri SA Chairman: Economics and Trade Centre of Excellence