Ramaphosa to ‘promote’ SA at G7 summit to boost investor confidence
President Cyril Ramaphosa says he will use the G7 leader summit this week to convince global leaders SA is an ideal country in which to invest and do business with despite its shortcomings.
He said it was an opportunity to discuss the country’s recovery plan after the Covid-19 pandemic, saying it was “slowly but steadily yielding results”.
Ramaphosa expressed these sentiments on Monday in his weekly newsletter.
“Gatherings such as the G7 are important opportunities for SA to promote its view of a fairer and more peaceful world. They are also an opportunity to promote our country as a destination in which to invest and do business, as a partner for development, and as an ally in resolving the most pressing social and political issues facing humankind.
“These gatherings also give us an opportunity to promote our continent as a destination for investment,” he said.
The president said he was invited to attend the summit as a guest country together with South Korea, Australia and India. He said he would personally communicate signs that SA was emerging from the devastation wrought by the pandemic.
“These signals include a strengthening currency, a record trade surplus and growth in mining, financial services and manufacturing. We can also talk about the life-changing opportunities being provided to our people through the Presidential Employment Stimulus. We can reflect there is progress towards greater policy and regulatory certainty in important economic sectors such as energy and telecommunications.”
Ramaphosa said South Africans’ outrage at the government was justified given the problems with which the country grappled. He was, however, optimistic progress was being made in addressing corruption and unemployment.
“It is understandable citizens may be frustrated by the slow pace of change, and feel our problems appear to be intractable.
“Our high rate of unemployment, for example, has not improved since the global financial crisis more than a decade ago and was made much worse by the pandemic. But sometimes we are so absorbed by our shortcomings that we often fail to acknowledge what we are doing right and where things are improving. We are making progress in resolving many of our challenges, from corruption to energy shortages to the obstacles that discourage investment. The pace of reform is picking up.”
The president said the government does not take for granted the patience and resilience shown by citizens.
“We acknowledge our shortcomings as a government and are working to remedy them. Optimism is the foundation of progress and hope is the companion of development. Cynical though some among us may be, let the progress we are making in overcoming the immediate crisis motivate us to do even better.”
He said SA had weathered many storms, encountered several setbacks and false starts but had soldiered on and should collectively continue to do so.
“It is this drive and determination that must continue to propel us forward as our country recovers socially, politically and economically. Let us look ahead and move forward. Let us nurture the green shoots of progress. Let us not only hope for better days, but let us work even harder to achieve them.”
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