Acclaimed economist Dawie Roodt shared his insights on the local and global economic landscape for retailers at the Gauteng leg of networking breakfasts hosted by the South African Council of Shopping Centres (SACSC) on Tuesday, February 20, 2017.
The highly-regarded Roodt, who is currently Chief Economist at the Efficient Group, Ltd. is renowned for his insights streaming from over two decades of economic and political analysis experience. Roodt addressed those in attendance at Sandton’s Balalaika Hotel, by touching on how Trump’s presidency will affect not only America’s economy but also Africa’s and the rest of the world.
He also commented on South Africa’s increasing unemployment rate and how high debt will further send our economy on a downward spiral if no actions are taken immediately. “There are approximately nine million unemployed people in the country. We need to grow our economy steadily in order to curb the unemployment rate and in doing so we will strengthen the rand and this will have a positive knock on effect in the future,” he said.
Roodt made mention of the country’s retail industry and how resilient local retailers are in this tough economic climate. “We are faced with challenging times, in saying that I am impressed by how steadfast our retailers are. The retail industry at large is a vibrant and dynamic one. No matter where you go in the world, you are sure to find a retailer of sorts. This means that there are many opportunities-even in these tough economic times. The bottom line is that if retailers can survive under these challenges, they will fly once the economy stabilizes. This year we will see our economy grow a little faster,” he said.
“My advice to retailers is that currently, the country is experiencing low interest rates at the moment. Capitalize on this low interest environment and capitalize now for the future. Position yourself towards economic growth because once our economy strengthens, retailers who have prepared for this can capitalize and succeed. I would also like let consumers know that we are all going through a tough time as well. The greatest weapon of all time is the pen and with the pen, we can decide who to put in power. With strong leadership, economies strengthen, unemployment decreases and people succeed,” added Roodt.
These quarterly networking breakfasts hosted by the SACSC take place in Cape Town, Durban and Johannesburg and are attended by retail, property and industry heavyweights. SACSC CEO Amanda Stops said she was excited to have Roodt as a guest speaker for the first event of the year for Johannesburg. “Dawie Roodt is an acclaimed economist and his insights definitely have relevance for the retail industry,” she said.
“Collectively, these types of events give everyone a chance to monitor trends, exchange ideas and share knowledge to support our industry growth and deliver value to our members” added Amanda.