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There is no plan, no direction, no idea. In the past few weeks SA has borrowed R70bn in Covid-19 relief from the International Monetary Fund (IMF). It is also clear that by banning trade in alcohol and cigarettes the government has lost a great deal more in taxes than it borrowed from the IMF.

This week both SAB and Heineken, and then Consol, SA’s biggest bottlemaker, announced cancellations of new investment projects totalling about R13bn. Three investment disasters that could have been avoided with common sense regulations, but there’s no-one home, even as the epidemic may be abating...

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