An issue often overlooked in many discussions is that of exports and trade in the South African economy. But with a downward trajectory over the past 20 years having indirectly cost our general economy up to $50 billion a year, this sector is fundamental to growing our economy. The role of international trade cannot be underestimated for a small, open economy like South Africa’s. In this podcast ERSA’s host is joined by Dr Matthew Stern, co-founder of the economics firm DNA Analytics and co-author of the policy paper, entitled “Understanding South Africa’s trade policy and performance”. Delving into South Africa’s trading role in Africa, China and the West of the World, this podcast paints an honest picture of the sustainability of our export industry. Matthew explains how new approaches to trade negotiations and policy can be used to facilitate a more favourable business and trading environment, given how resilient and responsive exporters were during the Covid-19 lockdowns and uncertainties. The deep insights and policy recommendations are golden.