South Africa is Africa’s biggest economy and happens to be the only African state to belong to the G20 league. The country has been severally mentioned by the Ibrahim’s report as one of those that have transparent budgets in the world. These positive attributes are manifest in many fronts of the economy, from education, to infrastructure and industry-the motor industry included.
South Africa is leading consumer of motor vehicles in Africa
Perhaps, in line with her promising economy, the purchasing power has been greatly boosted. On the list of countries’ vehicles per capita, south Africa ranks position 84 globally, and fourth in Africa, just behind Libya, Seychelles and Mauritius, despite her large population of about 53million people. If these numbers are anything to go by, then they point to critical information on the annual vehicle consumptions in South Africa. They give a rough figure of the numbers imported every year.
Numbers indicate more potential in the motor industry
Despite many nagging social and economic tussles, the South African industry looks headed for big success. In fact, economic pundits have termed it as ‘near-boom like-growth’. According to Edgar Lourencon, the president and managing director of General Motors (GM) in sub-Saharan Africa, the company has registered between 11 and 12% growth in the year 2012, representing 6,000 units per month sales in South Africa alone and a farther 900 units outside of South Africa. This is an annual consumption of 72,000 units in one country alone for one company!
According to a separate report, Nissan South Africa plans to inject more capital to tap to the growing motor industry by expanding its production plant in Rosslyn Pretoria, with the aim of producing over 100,000 annually, where the lion’s share of this sells within South Africa. The intended expansion will consume about R1bn when it completes in three years.
High local demand fueling growth
According to NAAMSA, National Association of Automobile Manufacturers, 69% of the vehicles produced in South Africa, a nation with plants for virtually all major auto manufacturers, are sold locally, with the remaining percentage shipping to US, UK, Japan, and the rest of Africa. This means that in 2011, when 532,545 units were produced, 367, 457 units were sold in South Africa, while 2012 recorded 411,551 units sold locally, going by the 12% registered growth.
The annual total consumption is therefore higher than the figures above if imports, both new and used, are considered. South Africa still imports vehicles from Japan, China, Germany and other sources. This put the total number of new vehicles sold in South Africa at 572,241 in 2011 which represented 16.2% growth compared with the previous year.