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How does the import duties affect your business?
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Below is another testimony from one of our members
As if covid 19 was not enough to add pressure to an already ailing industry, we now have to deal with unprecedented shortages on even the most common sizes of steel which used to be easily available off the shelf. This is ever so lovingly topped with that "icing on the cake" exorbitant and erratic pricing, if and when you do happen to find a supplier that has stock.
Half the day is spent phoning 8 or 9 suppliers and hunting for other steel suppliers in various parts of the country trying to locate material...sometimes to no avail. Material sizes then have to be changed and the necessary approvals obtained from engineers, architects and quantity surveyors adding to further delays on already time-constrained projects. Material available today is gone by tomorrow.
We manufacture and install sundry steel items and metalwork such as staircases, balustrades and architectural steelwork for the construction industry. They very often insist on fixed prices on tenders. Pricing tenders of this nature while risky to begin with, is now virtually suicide and as a result, we are losing countless opportunities. Pricing work today at a certain price and getting approval even a few days later could mean having to pay more for steel due to the extreme volatility. Our quotes are now only valid for 7 days and even this is a risk. These are just some of the countless ways we are being affected. It's getting harder to keep the doors open in this impossible environment.
It seems like we are constantly swimming upstream. When, if ever will we reach those calmer waters?