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mboweni replaced

By Zukile Majova and Sapa | Jul 20, 2009 | COMMENTS [ 0 ]

LEFT-LEANING organisations in the ruling tripartite alliance have called on Reserve Bank governor- designate Gill Marcus to lead a review of the central bank's inflation targeting policy.

President Jacob Zuma yesterday announced Marcus as Mboweni's replacement.

Mboweni has headed the Reserve Bank since 1999 and Marcus was his deputy from 1999 to 2004.

Mboweni's refusal to reconsider doing away with inflation targeting as policy led to Cosatu and the SACP lobbying against his reappointment when his term of office ends on August 7.

Yesterday SACP spokesperson Malesela Maleka made it clear that the debate around inflation targeting would dominate Marcus' tenure.

Maleka said the SACP blamed the failure of the economy to create jobs, even whiles it was growing over the past decade, on the central bank's "one-sided focus on inflation target".

"In this regard we need to explore other mechanisms to control price increases, fight poverty, promote the creation of decent work and reopen debates on the inflation-targeting framework," Maleka said.

Cosatu spokesperson Patrick Craven said the labour federation was hopeful that Marcus would lead a "shift in policy towards one that is geared to economic growth and job creation and will not be obsessed with inflation-targeting like her predecessor".

Yesterday Marcus refused to be drawn into a discussion about her style of governance but hinted she would encourage debate on how the central bank conducted its work.

Announcing Marcus' appointment at the Union Buildings yesterday Zuma said he had decided to reappoint Mboweni when his contract ends next month but the governor asked to be released in November.

"Given the indication from Mboweni I decided to designate Gill Marcus as governor of the Reserve Bank with effect from November 9 2009," Zuma said.

The president rejected suggestions that Cosatu and the SACP might have persuaded him not to convince Mboweni to stay for another term.

"I consulted the minister (Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan) but not the alliance," Zuma said.

Opposition parties, including the Democratic Alliance, also welcomed Marcus' appointment, with DA shadow minister of finance saying Marcus should maintain the current inflation policies.


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