Pro­duc­tion in min­ing above ex­pec­ta­tions

Swazi Observer - - BUSINESS -

JO­HAN­NES­BURG - Sta­tis­tics SA said yes­ter­day that min­ing pro­duc­tion had in­creased 2.4 per cent year-on-year in Jan­uary and above mar­ket ex­pec­ta­tions of a one per cent gain.

It said the out­put had in­creased faster for iron ore, non-metal­lic min­er­als and di­a­monds but slowed for plat­inum met­als groups (PGMs), man­ganese ore and build­ing ma­te­ri­als. In­vestec Econ­o­mist Lara Hodes said iron ore had made the largest con­tri­bu­tion to the topline growth since the be­gin­ning of 2018, fol­lowed by PGMS: “Min­ers have been sup­ported by ro­bust com­mod­ity prices, with the Econ­o­mist met­als in­dex av­er­ag­ing highs over the last few months last seen sev­eral years ago, shield­ing them to some ex­tent from the strong rand.” Stats SA also re­ported that min­eral sales had in­creased 1.8 per cent year-on-year in Fe­bru­ary com­pared to an in­crease of 3.4 per cent on a yearly ba­sis in Jan­uary.

It said the largest con­trib­u­tors to this in­crease were coal and man­ganese ore. While min­ing out­put inched up in the pe­riod, econ­o­mists be­lieve that the sec­tor risked be­ing a neg­a­tive con­trib­u­tor to first-year growth.

FNB se­nior eco­nomic an­a­lyst Ja­son Mus­cat said that for the three months to Fe­bru­ary, out­put was down 2.4 per cent quar­teron-quar­ter and was likely to de­tract from first quar­ter gross do­mes­tic prod­uct (GDP) growth.

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