Load-shedding affects SA businesses competitiveness

15 June 2015

A sweeping 97% of South African businesses polled by professional services group BDO South Africa recently believe the country’s fragile electricity

supply impacts negatively on investor perceptions of the country, with 56% indicating that load-shedding had negatively affected their operating costs and 51% reporting that their ability to deliver had been subsequently impaired.

“We noticed the effect it was having on our business and were curious to see the impact it had on our clients’ businesses,” BDO South Africa CEO Mark Stewart said of his company’s decision to conduct the research, which included responses from 400 of its South African clients.

A further 44% of respondents said they felt their company’s competitiveness was affected by load-shedding – a perception reinforced by the International Institute for Management Development’s (IMD’s) 2015 World Competitiveness Yearbook economic rankings, in which South Africa fell one place to fifty-third out of 61 countries, as government and business efficiency deteriorated.

IMD World Competitiveness Center director Professor Arturo Bris said South Africa’s challenges included a deteriorating education system, high youth unemployment, corruption, a lack of capacity in electricity generation and distribution and an insufficient supply of skilled engineers and technicians.

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