Quantec Standardised Industry: GDP growth by industry from 1994 to 2017

We have used data from our EasyData Industry Service to look at how industries contribute to growth in GDP in South Africa from 1994 to 2017.  There are 91 industries detailed within the EasyData Industry Service, but for now our focus is on the three main sectors of the economy namely the primary, secondary and tertiary sectors as well as the main industries within these sectors.

GDP growth by industry from 1994 to 2017: Primary, Secondary and Tertiary


In 2017 the average year-on-year growth in GDP in South Africa was 1.3%, the average growth rate from 1994 to 2017 was 2.8%. In 2017 the only sector that grew faster than the South African growth rate, was the primary sector which grew by 7.1%.

In 2017, the industries that grew faster than the national average were:

  1. Agriculture, forestry and fishing (17.8%)
  2. Mining and quarrying (4.0%)
  3. Finance, insurance, real estate and business services (1.9%)
  4. Transport and communication (1.7%)
  5. Community, social and personal services (1.4%)

The industry that contributed the most to growth in GDP, in 2017, were:

  1. Finance, insurance, real estate and business services (31.8%)
  2. Agriculture, forestry and fishing (31.2%)
  3. Mining and quarrying (23.6%
  4. Transport and communication (12.1%)
  5. Community, social and personal services (6.1%)

GDP growth in the primary sector from 1994 to 2017


In 2017, the primary sector grew by 7.1%. Within the primary sector both the agricultural forestry and fishing (17.8%) and the mining and quarrying (4.0%) industries grew at a faster rate compared to the national growth rate. The growth in the agricultural industry contributed 57.0% to the growth in the primary sector.

GDP growth in the secondary sector from 1994 to 2017


In 2017, the secondary sector contracted by 0.2%. The only industry within the secondary sector that showed positive growth, in 2017, was the electricity, gas and water industry which grew by 0.1%. The manufacturing industry contracted the most in 2017 (-0.3%).

GDP growth in the tertiary sector from 1994 to 2017

The tertiary sector grew with 0.9 percent in 2017. Within the tertiary sector the finance, insurance, real estate and business services grew at the highest rate (1.9%), but the growth in the transport and communication industry (1.7%) contributed the most to GDP growth in this sector (35.1% to the GDP of the tertiary sector, and 12.1% to South African GDP).

The data utilised in these graphs are downloaded from www.easydata.co.za, for more information on the EasyData services available please visit www.quantec.co.za/easydata/


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