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SA to appoint presidential task team for growth
July 30, 2013, 9:34 am


Ratings firm Moody’s affirmed South Africa’s debt ratings earlier this month [AP]

South Africa will appoint a presidential task team to focus on accelerating growth in the country, according to the ruling African National Congress (ANC) party.

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has revised South Africa’s growth forecast for this year down to two per cent in its latest World Economic Outlook.

“We will appoint a task team to consult on how the bottlenecks to growth can be addressed,” Bloomberg quoted Gwede Mantashe, Secretary General of the ANC as saying.

All details including names of members of this core team will probably be announced after a cabinet planning meeting that is due to take place in the middle of August, Mantashe told reporters in Johannesburg on Monday.

Labour relations have been tense in the country, especially in the mining sector with workers staging wildcat strikes.

South Africa’s Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe is trying to negotiate a stability pact for the mining industry which generates almost 60 per cent of its exports.

Sixty-seven per cent of private firms in South Africa are holding back investment decisions due to “uncertainty in the future political direction” of the country, said a recent Grant Thornton research report.

However, in a positive signal to the economy, ratings firm Moody’s affirmed South Africa’s debt ratings earlier this month.

Moody’s has recognised the government’s commitment to fiscal discipline and the National Development Plan (NDP) which demonstrates Pretoria’s intentions to implement economic growth, according to Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan.

With inputs from Agencies