South Africa’s economy is expanding at the slowest pace in more than four years as strike action continues.

“The strikes had a huge impact on the economy,” says Gerhardt Bouwer, executive manager of national accounts at Statistics South Africa, quoted by Bloomberg.

Gross domestic product rose an annualized 0.7 percent compared with the second quarter, when output increased a revised 3.2 percent, Statistics South Africa said in a report released in Johannesburg. The median estimate of 19 economists in a Bloomberg survey was 1 percent.

“Apart from the strike action, private sector consumption growth slowed down, government expenditure slowed and there was heightened uncertainty in global financial markets,” said Ilke van Zyl, an economist at Vunani Securities.

Consumer and business confidence in Africa’s largest economy remained close to record-low levels in the fourth quarter. While the economy is forecast to grow at the slowest pace since a 2009 recession this year, the Reserve Bank said last week there is no room for cutting interest rates as further rand weakness may fuel inflation. The currency has slid 16 percent against the dollar this year, rising less than 1 percent to 10.0972 per dollar.

Source: Bloomberg. For more information, click here.