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2008-10-29: Strong growth in Joburg economy

Johannesburg’s economy has grown by more than 6% per year in the last two years, reaching 6, 4% growth between 2006/07 and 2007/08. This growth has been driven by a range of sectors, construction in particular. Finance and business services remain the City’s largest economic sector.

Delivering the city’s Mid-Term Report on Wednesday (29-10-2008), Johannesburg Executive Mayor Cllr Amos Masondo, said the City’s important role as a generator of economic growth is widely recognised.  Johannesburg has to achieve a growth rate of 9% if the country had to realise a 6% economic growth by year 2014.

“This re-emphasised the need to diversify much more in respect of how our resources and plans were structured,” Mayor Masondo said.

The South African macro-economic environment has not escaped the pressures of the current global slowdown manifested in declining commodity prices and exchange rate, the inflation outlook, declining business confidence index and a downturn in industry results.

Johannesburg aims to develop the City’s economy as the key economic hub on the continent, and a national economic growth leader by ensuring sustainable-shared growth that benefits all.

This will require:
·    Diversifying the local economy;
·    Developing a local economy with strong links to the national, regional and global economy;
·    Encouraging a robust and growing domestic market for locally produced goods and services, and sustainable expansion of household demand;
·    Developing an equitable system of sharing the value gains from economic growth and geographically spreading economic activities; and
·    Ensuring continuous improvement in the general business environment for increased competitiveness.

Mayor Masondo said during the first half of this mayoral term, the economic sector has focused on systematically restructuring, realigning day-to-day operations of the core department and its associated entities. Concerted effort will now be placed on concluding all policy and planning processes and commencing with implementation across all focal areas.

The City has created 103 461 Expanded Public Works Programme (EPWP) jobs since 2004/05. It also created a significant number of learnerships. The City’s economic programmes focus on the unemployed, the informal sector and the working poor.