With business confidence at a 16 year low, the currency following suit, and our economy “sick”, this month’s From the Desk is surprisingly upbeat. Have a special read of the issues surrounding AGOA relating to what the US believes is true – and what actually is. It’s fascinating how reality is so far removed from perception. The focus really is on trade, and when reading this column, it’s easy to see how relentless the struggle is to keep it fair. Also, SAPA’S ‘new’ structure has started very positively, so if there’s a ray of sunshine (hopefully sprinkled with a few drops of droughtbreaking rain), you’ll find it here.
Economics is a complex subject, often jargon-laden and difficult for the average person to stay awake for – let alone understand! However, the presentation by Dr Azar Jammine of Econometrix at Avi Africa this year was remarkably simple to grasp – and also made for riveting listening as it unpacked all the factors affecting our economy right now. We have therefore reprinted it in this month’s Bulletin for those who missed it. It really is the what and why of South Africa’s economic health, which although pretty dire, does end on a positive note. For all those with an eye on the future, this is a must read.
As the costs are calculated following the massive AI outbreak in the US, we cover some of these in our International News section. Providing even more food for thought on this issue, our US correspondent Simon Shane, well known to many in the local poultry industry, tackles the question of compensation for producers affected by the ravages of disease in the event that steps are taken by government to limit the spread. While this is aimed at American producers, it’s clear that this is a universal question that applies as much to us as it does to producers the world over.
As I compile this magazine, it becomes increasingly apparent that we, as South African producers, are very much part of a global industry that shares much in common besides purely trade issues and battling for market share. An issue for one is an issue for all (if you’ll excuse the paraphrasing).
On that note, the promise of Spring always brings with it a sense of renewed optimism, and I wish you a soft, soaking rainfall in the months ahead, with a productive and fruitful summer.