Although skeptical investors “had every reason” to doubt South Africa, pres. Cyril Ramaphosa insisted at the fifth investment conference in Johannesburg on Thursday that the country is now “on the road to recovery”.
“We refuse to be deterred by the challenges we face. We are confident that we will recover again,” Ramaphosa said on Thursday.
“We remain convinced that South Africa is an investment destination with significant untapped potential.”
According to the president, almost R460 billion has been invested in building new factories, purchasing equipment, building roads and various other infrastructures.
“What really stands out is the effect these investments have on the lives of South Africans who are now able to make a decent living and provide for their families.”
Ramaphosa says his administration realizes that growth is necessary to create new jobs and that important economic reform is needed to achieve this growth. In light of this, the energy sector remains the country’s biggest priority.
“The lack of reliable electricity supply weakens trade and consumer confidence, damages international perceptions of our country and affects investment sentiment and decisions. “While load shedding will remain a challenge in the immediate future, its severity will begin to diminish as some of our more targeted initiatives come into effect.”
Another area the government will focus on is the crisis in the logistics industry.
“Transnet’s rail and port restrictions significantly affect the mining, agriculture, forestry, automotive and manufacturing sectors. We are prioritizing port and rail efficiency as part of the structural reform process,” said Ramaphosa.
“Our new national rail policy allows for third-party access to the freight rail network, which will empower private rail operators to increase investment and improve efficiency.”
In addition, the government will also expand the country’s e-visa system to include an additional 20 countries. Currently, only 14 countries are eligible for this.
New visa categories will also be created on the e-visa system, including study, business and transfer visas within companies.
“These reforms will enable us to attract skills and investors and create jobs while also protecting and promoting the employment of South Africans.”
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