According to Agricultural Business Chamber chief economist Wandile Sihlobo, South Africa’s agricultural growth path needs a focused trade policy strategy. Agbiz said that South Africa’s agricultural exports for the first eight months of this year amounted to $8.9 billion, up 6% from the first eight months of last year. But according to Sihlobo, the generally higher commodity prices had also contributed to this increase in export values.
This means that the industry and government should work more closely together on strengthening the current markets through continuous engagements at the political and business level while simultaneously exploring new and promising markets, he said.
“Ongoing conversations and collaboration between industry and logistics entities like Transnet are also crucial for the success of the export strategy. Logistics efficiency improvement is an integral part of the agriculture growth agenda that will ultimately deliver jobs and economic activity in rural South Africa,” Sihlobo said.