Everyone accepts that to create a more equitable society we need to grow the economy. As we wait to hear what President Cyril Ramaphosa will share as his vision for the country in the state of the nation address on Thursday evening, it may be worth reflecting on past strategies to achieve this goal.

Much coverage has been given to the importance of investment as a key strategy. Ramaphosa’s investment target is $100bn (about R1.2-trillion) over five years. Key to this is an undertaking to create a business-friendly environment, which means tackling the cost of doing business in SA and reducing red tape. But will the investment drive, even if it is mildly successful, generate a pattern of economic growth that takes on the key challenges in our country?..

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