South Africa’s business confidence edges lower in September

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JOHANNESBURG, Oct 11 (Businesshala) – South African trade confidence fell in September compared to August, as retail sales and manufacturing output declined, data showed on Monday.

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The Monthly Business Confidence Index (BCI) of the South African Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SACCI) declined to 91.0 in September from 91.9 in August.

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“Low retail sales volume, low manufacturing output and the decline in the real value of passed building plans were detrimental to the business environment in September 2021,” SACCI said in a statement.

“Energy and water supply concerns and higher fuel prices were also major contributors to a careful business outlook. Secure energy supply remains a significant concern for the business community in general.”

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State power firm Eskom, which has been mired in a financial crunch, said last week it would extend scheduled power cuts till Thursday following a series of additional faults at its coal-fired power stations.

Power cuts are making it difficult for the economy, which faced a massive contraction of 6.4% in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, to recover.

Reporting by Olivia Kumwenda-Matumbo Editing by Alexander Winning

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