SA's weak economic growth and dismal unemployment figures are symptoms of economic policies that contradict each other, and without clarity there will be no clear path for SA to emerge from the quagmire it is in. A 2.2% contraction in GDP in the first quarter of 2018 was the largest quarter-on-quarter decline since 2009, with agriculture, manufacturing and mining the primary contributors to the poor performance. Pundits have argued that the structural composition of our economy will remain a key constraint in realising long-term sustainable growth - necessitating a critical assessment of our economic policy frameworks. In August 2007, the cabinet approved the first iteration of the Industrial Action Policy Plan (Ipap), emphasising value-added manufacturing as a primary growth imperative. Secondary effects would be growth in employment and an improved trade balance. The policy argues that low interest and concessional finance aimed specifically at industry will be key levers for sect...

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