Pretoria - Business Unity South Africa (BUSA) has welcomed the announcement by the Presidency that this year's State of the Nation Address (SONA) will be held in the evening.
BUSA said business has for a long time been concerned about loss of productivity that arises as a result of a proliferation of national events and public holidays.
"We are thus pleased that the 11th will be a full working day for business and parliamentarians. This is more so, given the potential number of days which we are going to lose during the 2010 FIFA World Cup," a BUSA statement said.
Earlier this week, the Presidency said President Jacob Zuma would deliver his address to a joint sitting of Parliament at 7pm on 11 February. Zuma proposed the unprecedented change to enable more people to follow the ceremony on television.
Traditionally the opening of Parliament would take place in the morning, with the President's address at 11am.
BUSA described the decision as a signal to commitment to enhancing national competitiveness, as South Africa negotiates the post-recession economic challenges.
"This is consistent with the stated objective of improving government performance and service delivery to our people," it said.