Malusi Gigaba. Picture: BUSINESS DAY
Malusi Gigaba. Picture: BUSINESS DAY

Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba has called for radical economic transformation — once again saying black business is key to economic growth in SA.

Speaking at a Black Business Council gala dinner on Monday night, Gigaba said: "Leadership bears the burden of responsibility; the responsibility to help serve the challenges of our time … The most difficult challenge of out time … is to transform the South African economy and grow it in an inclusive way."

He said the economy was still largely informed by and still reflected SA’s colonial and apartheid past.

"Our inability to transform the economy has left the poor particularly vulnerable to the shocks of economic growth.

"Black dispossession has been normalised in our society … there are those shocked by the call for radical economic transformation," he said.

It was important to move towards a diversified economy that was integrated in Africa and globally, as an exporter.

"We are faced with a challenge of undertaking economic transformation in a context that is not our own doing.

"Let us work together to implement programmes and initiatives. Nothing worth doing is ever easy and the circumstances are never perfect.

"We need to adopt the mind-set that growing black business is the key to economic growth. We need to move beyond justifying the need for econ-omic transformation.

"Growing black business is good for SA. We need to stop talking about black economic empowerment and corruption in the same breath.

"They are not two sides of the same coin."

He said the character and business of white people was not tainted by scandals.

"We need white business to champion transformation and view it in their commercial interests. This task is both urgent and unavoidable."

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