Supplement September 2013: Seventh Census of Foreign Liabilities and Assets: 31 December 2011
Last Modified Date:
2020-10-01, 09:31 PM
Quarterly Bulletins > Supplements
Statistics on South Africa’s international investment position date back to the end of 1956 – the yearin respect of which the South African Reserve Bank (the Bank) took the First Census of Foreign Transactions, Liabilities and Assets. Subsequently, the Bank has conducted comprehensive censuses of foreign transactions, liabilities and assets in respect of the years1973, 1980, 1989, 1995, 2001 and 2011. For the periods between censuses, the stock of South Africa’s external liabilities and assets was estimated by using information obtained through comprehensive surveys. Census projects play a key role in establishing benchmark statistics for South Africa’s international investment position, and in validating and updating sample surveys applied by the Bank to obtain data for the compilation of the country’s balance of payments.The undertaking of the Seventh Census of Foreign Transactions, Liabilities and Assets in respect of 2011 was motivated in part by the global financial crisis in 2008 and the subsequent changes in the global economic environment. Since emerging-market and developing countries have gained considerably in driving global economic activity in the aftermath of the global financialcrisis, South Africa has registered meaningful changes in the relative importance of its trading-partner countries. The respective domestic sectors’ involvement in international trade has also changed over time. Owing in part to the change in trade patterns, South Africa also experienced changes to the composition of both inward and outward capital flows, with a notable surge indirect investment capital.The outcome of a census project critically depends on the co-operation received from a large number of organisations in providing accurate financial information to the Bank in a timely manner. While an additional reporting burden was imposed on the reporting entities in completing the required comprehensive questionnaires, the Bank received excellent co-operation from the vast majority of organisations approached during the project. The Bank accordingly wishes to express its sincere gratitude and appreciation to those organisations that participated in thecensus and contributed to the results summarised in this report.