WITH Arcelor Mittal SA set to implement yet another hefty steel price increase next month, the price of steel will be more than 60% higher than it was at the beginning of this year.
But if that's shocking, add all the other shock increases in key input costs and you begin to wonder whether SA's economy, or indeed any economy, can still afford to do what it needs to do in the way of infrastructure spending. The question raised by a range of double-digit price increases is whether we don't need to take another look at the timing and sequencing of public and private sector investment plans. Investment is needed to support growth. But it is possible that at least for now, we may not be able to invest or to grow as fast as we might have hoped.
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