It’s been close on a decade where we’ve watched the economy struggle and toil as deterioration in both the domestic and global environment served to tighten the noose around a stretched fiscus.
It’s almost a fortnight since President Cyril Ramaphosa received the economic response plan from social partners at the National Economic Development and Labour Council, which the cabinet is now reviewing as we look to get stuck into the hard work ahead of getting the economy into a stronger position.
For much of the past decade, we have become a country accustomed to bouts of panic over some of our deteriorating economic fundamentals.
The question over the future of SAA has so often been pitched as a battle between those in favour of state ownership and those clamouring for a much smaller government role in the economy.
The report card for SA’s second-quarter GDP performance was always going to be dire and serve to remind us of the size of the challenge we all have in rebuilding the economy in the aftermath of the Covid-19 pandemic — and rebuilding it not into what it was before we headed into this crisis but recasting it so we finally get onto a much higher growth and employment trajectory.
THERE’S some attraction to dismissing this week’s record economic contraction in the second quarter as just something for the history books, reflecting a period that will never again be repeated.
The weight of the challenge we face in getting the SA economy back to a more stable and secure path is best reflected by the expected GDP quarter-on-quarter contraction from April to June of 49%, according to Bloomberg consensus forecasts of 11 economists.
For a better sense of perspective and to ease my growing anxieties about our country, I have to often remind myself that the political changes that we were all hoping for in the governing party took place only about two years ago.
If you had to sum up the most important delivery of what’s still a young presidency of Cyril Ramaphosa, it’s clawing back lost confidence in the SA public at large that institutions of state will work in the best interests of the country as a whole.
I’m not much of a boxing fan but one of the aspects I know from the sport is the “tale of the tape”, which reflects the statistics of the two boxers about to get into the ring.
For the past five months, every conversation about the health of the economy hinged on the response to the pandemic and the level of our national lockdown.
Leading South Africa after what we can all agree was a wasted decade of the presidency of Jacob Zuma was never going to be an easy task.