Will the recapitalisation of South Africa's state-owned companies be funded with its first official loan from the International Monetary Fund? This is the question that is increasingly on the lips of economists as it becomes apparent that Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba's budget choices are limited. When Gigaba and his director-general Dondo Mogajane meet world finance leaders at the IMF/World Bank annual meetings this week in Washington, much attention will be on his message and any indication that South Africa may approach the global lender with cap in hand. Tapping in to an IMF loan by drawing down on its special drawing rights as a member state would be a first for South Africa's democratic government. In June, Gigaba flirted with the idea of seeking support from the funding institution should South Africa's economic woes persist. Growth is expected to be 0.6% this year, according to the Reserve Bank, which would make it the second consecutive year it has grown by less than a per...

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