Will finance minister Pravin Gordhan be able to pull enough rabbits out of the hat on October 26 to stave off an investment downgrade at the end of the year? National attention will soon turn to his "mini-budget", the medium-term budget policy statement . National treasury has largely led the recent charge to persuade credit-rating agencies and investors that SA remains a "going concern" and just needs more time to get its house in order.It is Gordhan who, together with business and labour, has taken on the main role of lobbying for SA.Gordhan recently claimed that there was "more than a 50% chance" that SA could avoid a downgrade this year.Even leaving aside political pressures on treasury, there is a real danger that too much may be expected from the mini-budget. There is little that Gordhan can credibly deliver in pivotal areas of policy that lie outside the sphere of treasury, such as in labour policy. That is, if what needs to be done in SA is not reinforced as a collective eff...

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