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President Cyril Ramaphosa is gearing up for his fourth investment conference later this month at which SA’s large corporates will no doubt make nice in the way they did at the last three — by pledging investments they were going to make anyway to stay in business.

But while trade, industry & competition minister Ebrahim Patel trumpeted the success of the investment drive in a recent briefing, highlighting the R774bn in pledges at the first three conferences, of which R314bn has already been invested, the macroeconomic numbers tell a different story...

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