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Johannesburg, 7 September 2017 – The Automotive Production and Development Programme’s (APDP’s) impact on demand for South Africa’s metals and engineering sector will come under the spotlight in next week’s 3rd Southern African Metals and Engineering Indaba.

The APDP, a government programme to support and stimulate the growth of the South African automotive industry, came into effect in January 2013 following the end of the Motor Industry Development Programme (MIDP). The programme sets a vision for the local automotive sector until 2020.

Speaking ahead of the annual Indaba, Steel and Engineering Industries Federation of Southern Africa (SEIFSA) CEO Kaizer Nyatsumba said today that there were strong linkages between the automotive sector and the metals and engineering sector.

“Like most sectors in the South African economy, the automotive sector has been hit by low economic growth as well as weak consumer and business confidence. These factors continue to weigh heavily on the prospects of the automotive sector.

“We, therefore, support the Government’s efforts to enhance global competitiveness, growth and development of the automotive sector. We believe that ensuring the sustainability of job-creating sectors is a priority, given the unacceptably high unemployment levels. This is more pertinent in the current low-growth environment,” Mr Nyatsumba said.

The automotive sector is the largest manufacturing sector in South Africa. According to the Automotive Export Manual 2017, vehicle and components production accounted for 33% of South Africa’s total manufacturing output in 2016.

“From these statistics alone, it is clear that the automotive industry is fundamentally critical to South Africa’s growth and development agenda,” Mr Nyatsumba said.

The Metals and Engineering Indaba has an excellent line-up of speakers. They include ANC Treasurer-General Dr Zweli Mkhize and ANC National Executive Committee (NEC) member and former African Union Chairperson Dr Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, who will deliver the Opening and Closing addresses, respectively.
Speakers at the session on the APDP are National Association of Automobile Manufacturers of South Africa Director Nico Vermeulen, Renai Moothilal of the National Association of Automobile Components and Allied Manufacturers, SEIFSA Chief Economist Dr Michael Ade and Dineshan Moodley of the Automotive Industry Development Centre.
The Indaba will also feature sessions focusing on:

· Political Leadership in Southern Africa: Does it Advance or Hamper Economic Growth?

· The Continental Free Trade Area: A Reality Before The End of 2017?

· Winning Together: Can Government, Business and Labour Conclude a Social Compact in the interest of Labour Stability and Foreign Investment?

· Seven years of BRICS membership: Has South Africa benefitted commercially?

· The Future of Collective Bargaining

· Do Steel Import Tariffs Benefit or Hurt the South African Economy?

(The programme for the Metals and Engineering Indaba is attached)

ENDS

Issued by:

Siseko Njobeni
Communications Manager
Tel: (011) 298 9411 and 082 602 1725
Email: siseko@seifsa.co.za
Web: www.seifsa.co.za

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