The recent offshore gas find by Total provides SA with a rare opportunity to establish a sovereign wealth fund along the lines of other oil-producing countries, mineral resources minister Gwede Mantashe said in the National Assembly on Wednesday. A sovereign wealth fund would ensure the benefits of the discovery are preserved for future generations, he said in reply to a question by ANC MP Sahlulele Luzipo. The minister said it was early days to determine the opportunities that would arise from the discovery, but it offers the potential to reduce the country’s dependence on imported oil and gas; would assist SA in establishing a petroleum sector as an important sector of the economy; would help grow the economy with the opportunity of achieving a 5% growth rate at full production of the oil and gas; and would create jobs. ensorl@businesslive.co.za

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