South Africa intensifies investment drive

Thursday, June 20, 2019

As part of building “a South Africa we want”, President Cyril Ramaphosa says government will intensify its already successful investment drive.

This will build on the R300 billion worth of investments announced during the 2018 inaugural Investment Conference. Of these, just over R250 billion worth of projects have entered implementation phase.

“We continue to build a pipeline of investments, which will be showcased at the second South African Investment Conference to be held on 5 to 7 November,” said the President.

The President made the announcement at the State of the Nation Address (SONA) on Thursday evening to a joint sitting of the two Houses of Parliament.

President Ramaphosa had appointed investment envoys to search for investors with deep pockets last year. The President’s Special Envoys on Investment include finance heavyweights such as former Finance Minister Trevor Manuel, former Finance Deputy Minister Mcebisi Jonas, the executive chairperson of Afropulse Group, Phumzile Langeni and chairman of Liberty Group and former CEO of Standard Bank Jacko Maree.

“At a time of uncertainty, the work of the investment envoys has built important bridges between government and the business community. From their feedback, it is clear that much more still needs to be done to improve the investment climate,” said the President.

This, he said, includes reviewing the way government coordinates work to resolve challenges faced by investors and reforming investment promotion policy and architecture.

In line with this, the President said good progress has been made through the Public-Private Growth Initiative, which is being championed by Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs Minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, Roelf Meyer and Johan van Zyl.

The private sector has committed to invest R840 billion in 43 projects over 19 sectors and to creating 155 000 jobs in the next five years.

In discussions with business, government has committed to removing the policy impediments and accelerate implementation of these projects.

‘We are urgently working on a set of priority reforms to improve the ease of doing business by consolidating and streamlining regulatory processes, automating permit and other applications, and reducing the cost of compliance,” said the President.


In a bid to increase investment, government will prioritise infrastructure with its first step being the institutionalisation of the Infrastructure fund. 

“We are working to institutionalise the fund, which will be managed by the Development Bank of Southern Africa, with the newly configured Department of Public Works and Infrastructure playing an oversight role,” said the President.

The fund was announced in the previous SONA, followed up with government setting aside R100 billion to seed the Infrastructure Fund. 

The Fund includes a special package of financial and institutional measures to boost construction and prioritise water infrastructure, roads and student accommodation through a more efficient use of budgeted money.

The President also expressed that government’s new approach to infrastructure development will be based on stronger partnerships between the public and private sectors, and with local communities.

President Ramaphosa said reforms on infrastructure will ensure better planning of infrastructure projects.

“..Rigorous feasibility and preparatory work, improved strategic management, impeccable execution and better governance. This will provide a much-need boost to the construction sector,” he said. –