One of government’s top fi ve priorities over the next 12 months
is to accelerate inclusive economic growth and create jobs.
“Last year, our economy was confronted by the reality of a technical recession.
Government responded with an economic stimulus and recovery plan that redirected public funding to areas with the greatest potential for growth and job creation.
“Our approach was not to spend our way out of our economic troubles, but to set the economy on a path of recovery,” the President said.
The past 12 months thus saw government implementing measures to ignite economic activity, restore investor confidence,
support employment and address the urgent challenges that affect vulnerable society members.
However, the President said that the levels of growth needed to make signifi cant gains in job creation are not possible without massive new investment.
Attracting investment Government aims to raise more investment by again hosting the South Africa Investment Conference,
which last year resulted in concrete agreements between organised labour, business, the community and government.
“The inaugural South Africa Investment Conference, in October last year,
provided great impetus to our drive to mobilise R1.2 trillion in investment over fi ve years.
It attracted around R300 billion in investment pledges from South African and international companies.
“To prove that our investment conference was not just a talk shop, where empty promises were made,
projects to the value of R187 billion are being implemented and projects worth another R26 billion are in pre-implementation phase,” the President said.
Following the conference, a group of South African business leaders, moved
by the spirit of Thuma Mina, initiated the PublicPrivate Growth Initiative to facilitate focused investment plans to lead companies across 19 sectors of the economy,
from mining and renewable energy to manufacturing and agriculture.
“These industries expect to substantially expand investment over the next five years and create a vast number of new jobs,
especially if we can enhance demand for local goods, further stabilise the labour environment and improve conditions for doing business,”he added.
As part of its work to remove constraints to greater investment, government has established a team from the Presidency, Invest SA,
National Treasury and the Department of Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation to address policy,
legal, regulatory and administrative barriers that frustrate investors.
“This is an important aspect of our work to improve the ease of doing business in South Africa, which is essential to attracting investment.
This team will report progress to Cabinet monthly,” the President said.
The World Bank’s annual Doing Business Report currently ranks South Africa at 82 out of 190 countries tracked.
“We have set ourselves the target of being among the top 50 global performers within the next three years,” he said.
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