South Africa

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Growth in trading density – a measure of turnover per sq metre of retail space – for South Africa’s larger malls has lagged behind that of smaller shopping centres, in part a reflection of the country’s slowing economy and the rapid increase in the number of dedicated retail properties.

Sales growth in South Africa’s retail sector has cooled, a result of a slow economy and conservative consumer sentiment, but there is cause for cautious optimism as the approach of summer and Christmas is likely to give the sector a lift.

Stronger performance in the manufacturing industry helped keep South Africa’s economy out of a recession, and has led to a slight upward revision in annual growth forecasts.

A cooling economy and reduced spending is expected to limit growth in South Africa’s insurance industry through to the end of the year, with operators likely to struggle to increase market share and maintain revenue levels.

Drought continues to impact agricultural production in South Africa, though seasonal rains should underpin a sector rebound along with government efforts to stimulate the agro-processing segment.

Already the continent’s largest producer of renewable energy, South Africa is moving to further reduce its reliance on hydrocarbons by expanding private sector investments in solar and wind projects, and introducing biofuels.

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