Inter-Sectoral Comparative and Competitive Advantages of South Africa


The authors investigate the inter-sectoral comparative and competitive advantages of South Africa using Balassa technique. South Africa demonstrates significant, comparative and competitive-advantages in chemicals and the allied industries, metals and machinery/electrical sectors. There are comparative and competitive disadvantages in foot wear/head gear sector. This sector is followed by raw hides, skin, leather, and fur sectors. Most of the sectors fall in the middle ranks and there is an evidence of substantial manufacturing in South Africa. It is recommended that South Africa should work on attracting new investment, especially the foreign direct investment to improve those sectors which fall in the middle ranks. It is also recommended that South African channel resources from sectors which lack comparative and competitive advantages to sectors with such advantages, to ensure specialization where South Africa’s productive capacities are efficient.

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