“To be an investment destination of choice, we need to resolve the problems that keep investors away from our continent.” Who would argue with that statement by President Cyril Ramaphosa at the Africa Investment Forum on Thursday? The president has been lauded recently for his positive words, as even the sceptics acknowledge that there has been a sea change from the Jacob Zuma years when business was treated as the enemy of the people, no different to the way the president of the US views the media. Dial back to earlier in 2018 and the relief when it became clear that the next leader of the country would not be someone called Zuma. That goodwill, which saw the rand climb to multiyear highs and the country’s borrowing costs drop, was then squandered by a government that is still prone to mixed messages and a lack of consistency.

After a period marked by improving business and consumer confidence, the tone changed in late July when Ramaphosa decided to fall for the EFF’s populis...

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