September 2021 – Note on the impact of the benchmark revisions and rebasing of national accounts statistics on the current account of the balance of payments and the terms of trade
Last Modified Date:
2021-09-27, 11:03 PM
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The benchmark revisions of the components of nominal gross domestic product (GDP) by Statistics South Africa (Stats SA), in collaboration with the South African Reserve Bank (SARB), are conducted at regular five-year intervals. These revisions, along with the rebasing of the real (or constant price) estimates to the 2015 base year have impacted South Africa’s current account of the balance of payments and the terms of trade statistics. The revised value of the current account balance remained broadly unchanged, despite a general upward revision of its components. This is consistent with the higher revised value of nominal GDP, which indicates a higher level of economic activity.
The balance on the current account of the balance of payments, expressed in nominal terms, is affected by both the revised nominal exports and the imports of goods and services, with those of goods impacting the trade account and those of services the services, income and current transfer account. In addition, although not part of the GDP components, cross-border income and current transfers also impact the current account. Furthermore, the terms of trade is also impacted by the revised nominal and real estimates of the imports and exports of goods