SA Business Confidence Index records marginal decrease amid coronavirus

Data released by the South African Chamber of Commerce and Industry (Sacci) shows that the Business Confidence Index (BCI ) has recorded a marginal decrease to 94 in March 2021 compared to 94.5 index points in January 2021.

The Chamber notes that the slowdown in business confidence comes as the business climate remains constricted due to continuing economic uncertainty, and the prospects of a further lockdown amid rumours of a third wave of infections.

The report shows that the positive month-on-month contributions to the BCI in March 2021 were notably caused by the increased number of new vehicle sales and higher volume of merchandise imports followed by lower levels of inflation.

Sacci Economist, Richard Downing says investors will be looking at the countries policy environment before investing further.

“There’s a lot of competition for investment and you must put forward a policy framework that people believe in compared to other countries and the results are achieved. And if our problem is fiscal dilemma and figures on public finances, it doesn’t look good compared to other countries. So, you can’t compare yourself with the bad apples; you must rather compare yourself with the guys who are up there to attract the investment that you need.”

In February, President Cyril Ramaphosa told parliament that the economy has already begun a steady recovery from the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic. The president was replying to the debate on his State of the Nation Address.

President Cyril Ramaphosa replies to Sona debate:

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He strongly rejected criticism of government’s handling of the COVID-19 pandemic, saying the state’s key goal has been to save lives and livelihoods.

Ramaphosa said government has led and protected South Africans since the pandemic began. He emphasised how the country will rise from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Source: SABC News (sabcnews.com)