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Public Policy Responses to the Global Financial and Economic Crisis: Lessons from South Africa
This article aims to assess the impact of the global fi nancial and economic crisis on two sectors in South Africa, namely, the automobile sector and the textile and clothing sector. It also examines the role of public policy in responding to that crisis. Its main objective is to determine whether or not those responses were adequate. Based on a review of secondary data on some sectors, the article argues that the crisis had a negative impact on production, sales, exports and employment on the sectors under study. It also argues that South Africa is one of the few African countries which responded swiftly and in an integrated manner. To that extent, it has some useful lessons to offer. Although it performed relatively better compared to other countries, particularly in Africa, public policy did not address fundamental structural factors which were the underlying reason for the country being adversely affected by the crisis in the fi rst place.