This post digs into South Africa’s inward and outward direct and portfolio investment based on data from the IMF. IMF data show that the Netherlands and the UK are South Africa’s most important direct investment counterparties. Together these two counterparties represented over 60% and over 55% of our total direct inward and direct outward investment position in 2021. The Netherlands and the UK also dominate inward and outward direct equity investment. South Africa’s largest portfolio investment destinations are the UK and Ireland, while the largest creditors for portfolio investment in South Africa are the US and Luxembourg. South African foreign portfolio equity is dominated by the UK (almost 35% of total), while inward portfolio equity is dominated by investments from the US (over 50% of total). South Africa’s debt liabilities are owed predominantly to the US and Luxembourg, while South African portfolio debt assets are predominantly in the US and UK.
It is important to note that there are meaningful differences between the data from the IMF and those presented in the Quarterly Bulletin by SARB. This likely reflects, among other things, differences in balance of payments data reported by individual countries.