The business outlook is positive and demand for non-ferrous scrap is improving. In April, electricity costs will increase by 9.5%; furthermore, there has been load shedding, with insufficient maintenance at power stations set to affect the economy going forward.
With oil at over US$ 105 per barrel, the price of petrol will go up by more than ZAR 2.5 per litre to ZAR 24. This will have a tremendous impact on the economy.
Following the introduction of an export tax on scrap metal (10% on both copper and brass and 15% on aluminium) by the Department of Trade & Industry, the Treasury and the International Trade Administration Commission, more material is being sold domestically than into overseas markets, with local consumers using the Price Preference System.
Objections are being raised to export permits and are being blocked by consumers. The main type of scrap metal still being exported is Honey.
Scrap dealers are still melting copper, brass and aluminium into blocks, ingots and billets, causing a shortage of certain grades of scrap.
The Russia/Ukraine conflict is affecting the South African economy: logistics and shipments are subject to long delays and are more expensive. The local currency is trading stronger at ZAR 14.95 to the US dollar.