Countries / Territories

South Africa

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Country Brief

South Africa is one of Africa’s biggest economies. It is located in the southern tip of the continent and borders Botswana, Lesotho, Mozambique, Namibia, Swaziland and Zimbabwe.

South Africa is a Member of the BRICS, the group of emerging world economies including China, Brazil, Russia and India. The country has a well-advanced financial, legal, communications, energy and transport sectors. Its main export commodities are gold, diamonds, platinum, other metals and minerals, machinery and equipment.
South Africa’s main trade partners are the European Union, China, US, Japan and India. Future development challenges remain inequality and high unemployment rate, which was worsened by the post-2008 economic slowdown.

The 2030 National Development Plan, released in 2012, outlines the country’s vision and development plan. It identifies the following three intertwined priorities to address the country’s major challenges: raising employment through faster economic growth; improving the quality of education, skills development and innovation; and, building the capacity of the state to play a developmental, transformative role. Past ITC projects supported value chain and trade analysis for the department of Agriculture.

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Export potential

Notes: Top 20 products listed in decreasing order of their export potential to the world. Development indicators are relative to the country’s current situation, green indicating performance above its trade-weighted median and red otherwise. A blank cell indicates that data are not available. A blank cell in export potential means that the product was not consistently demanded over five years by any country in the respective region. Exports (US$ thousand) correspond to average exports to the world over the period 2009-2013.