Mboweni facing a daunting task

Newly sworn in Minister of Finance Tito Mboweni
Newly sworn in Minister of Finance Tito Mboweni
Image: Esa Alexander

As expected, former finance minister Nhlanhla Nene resigned to avoid exerting aggravated pressure on the already stressed business and public confidence. His successor Tito Mboweni answered the call to salvage the precarious situation.

President Cyril Ramaphosa handed him the job on a plate to resuscitate the economy that is recovering from its worst investment drought and technical recession.

It's actually a daunting task for a newcomer.

Mboweni being equal to the task, this appointment presents an opportunity for him to incubate a successor.

The next greatest challenge for him is to deal with the threat of further downgrade to the country's credit outlook and maladministration, following alleged state capture that led to the country losing billions to corruption. Minister of trade and industry Rob Davies correctly pointed out that corruption hindered the country's potential to buy local, thereby contributing to the weak growth and regression in the economy.

This unbridled corruption is attributed to the issuance of contracts and tenders to selected foreign corporations, without any obligation for such entities to contribute towards skills development and competitiveness of local businesses.

Basically put, public institutions are guilty of procuring goods and services from the international market without leveraging the potential of localisation to realise our developmental goals.

The ripple effect is precisely why the cost of living has sky-rocketed and hit consumer activity due to the VAT increase, which stoked food inflation.

Morgan Phaahla


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