Projects to be done differently to get better results – Ramaphosa

President Cyril Ramaphosa
President Cyril Ramaphosa
Image: ESA ALEXANDER/SUNDAY TIMES

President Cyril Ramaphosa has promised that the government will implement infrastructure projects differently to re-boost the economy and create the much-needed jobs.

Speaking at the Infrastructure SA project preparation roundtable in Midrand on Tuesday, Ramaphosa said the government is committed to implement economic reforms, create an enabling environment for businesses to thrive, and fight corruption.

These three aims are part of the economic reconstruction and recovery plan which the government is implementing to take the country forward.

Ramaphosa said infrastructure project planning and implementation will be done differently to achieve different results.

He said the government will move from mere slogans into a credible project pipeline in which the private sector will play a key role.

Project preparation will be the main focus.

“Project preparation is often a very costly exercise but absolutely necessary because with it you can draw a number of benefits. It enhances transparency, eliminates corruption, enhances skills transfer and increases the capability of the state. The obvious benefits are also about completing projects on time, on budget and on target," Ramaphosa said.

“If you go around the country you find projects that have been either stopped or abandoned because there was no proper planning and preparation. You will see foundations sprawling from a number of places in our country. You will see pipes lying on the side of the road. We want to avoid that,” he said.

Last month, Ramaphosa delivered his economic recovery plan to the nation in which infrastructure projects were the main feature.

This comes on the heels of an inaugural sustainable infrastructure investment symposium which was held in June. At the symposium, government together with the private sector was able to identify 276 projects with a total investment value of more than R2.7-trillion.

“These were not thumb sucks. These are real projects that can be planted in South African soil. We’ve since gazetted 50 of these strategic integrated projects with a value of R340bn,” Ramaphosa said.

An additional 12 special projects have been identified in  water and sanitation, energy, transport, digital infrastructure, agriculture and human settlements.

The government has also set up a national infrastructure fund which has a mix of financing instruments aimed at de-risking projects and make them attractive for private sector participation.

The roundtable held in Midrand is part of the process of creating a more structured approach to project preparation which will help deliver projects, on time, within budget and with the involvement of local communities.

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