Behind Cyril’s $100bn charm offensive
SA’s spade work is paying off and more investment is on the way — but bolder reforms will be needed for it to properly gain momentum
They say a recession is the one you talk yourself into. SA is in danger of making that mistake, judging from the rash of doomsday headlines that warn of recession, a fiscal cliff and a weak president beset by enemies. The narrative that "Ramaphoria" has turned into "Ramaphobia" — a view fuelled by SA’s crushing first-quarter GDP numbers — is countered by President Cyril Ramaphosa’s progress towards his target of raising $100bn in new investment over the next five years. So far, he has raised $20bn from Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, mainly in energy and tourism; a further R850m from the UK; and R10bn from Mercedes-Benz to expand its East London manufacturing plant. SA should expect similar announcements from other corporates, according to Standard Bank chief economist Goolam Ballim. He says "there is feverish business everywhere" and the investment undertakings Ramaphosa has secured are "the real deal". Ballim should know. He has just spent four days in London facilitati...
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