IBR -Q1 2024

Uncovering South Africa's Q1 2024 Constraints

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Mid-market businesses have shifted their concerns regarding economic uncertainty which has improved by six points, a decrease from 64 % in H2 2023 to 58% in Q1 2024 as shown in the graph below.

This uncertainty is likely influenced by the upcoming elections, indicating that the mid-market businesses are hopeful about potential policy changes and the corresponding impact on the business environment. 



Labour costs have risen from 46% in H2 2023 to 53% in Q1 2024. This increase is in line with the increase in the availability of skilled workers which also increased from 38 % in H2 2023 to 52% in Q1 2024. See graph above. 

The availability of skilled workforce has seen a notable and welcomed improvement from 38% to 52%, indicating positive developments for the job market which has been under pressure in the previous year. This is positive for mid-market businesses in their ability to leverage the required skills to enable growth. This should be closely monitored as to assess the potential impact post-elections, as any destabilisation and changes to policies may have an impact on education and immigration, affecting the future availability of skilled workers.

Shortage of finance remains a concern, with mid-market businesses expressing expectations similar to H2 2023 at 43%. This could be expected based on the current local economic outlook and volatility in global markets. 

Energy costs remain a significant concern for the mid-market to operate, sighting that any further increases from the government could really challenge the ability of businesses to be sustainable.  

Regulation and red tape have remained unchanged at 44%, suggesting ongoing bureaucratic challenges for mid-market businesses, resulting in businesses treading carefully in an election year. The election outcome could influence regulatory frameworks, potentially easing or exacerbating these hurdles. The survey data has added six more new constraints which we will look at in the next coming quarters for a better analysis


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