Economic justice

Africa’s debt to China is complicated

President Cyril Ramaphosa assured South Africans this week that the government was not in the habit of “handing over the assets of our country to other nations [or] to other entities outside of our country”.

The state “has not sold the soul of South Africa to the highest bidder”, he promised, in reply to a question in the National Council of Provinces about the details of a R33-billion loan from the China Development Bank (CDB) to embattled power utility Eskom.

The economy shrinks by 0,7% in Q2: 2018

The South African economy slipped into recession during the second quarter of 2018, shrinking by 0,7% quarter-on-quarter (seasonally adjusted and annualised). This followed a revised 2,6% contraction in the first quarter of 2018.

The widely recognised indicator of recession is two (or more) consecutive quarters of negative growth (real GDP quarter-on-quarter). South Africa experienced its last recession during the 2008–2009 global financial crisis with three consecutive quarters of economic decline.

SA Technical recession risk for 2018

South Africa’s technical recession poses a risk to 2018’s tax revenues, Finance Minister Nhlanhla Nene told a tax indaba on Monday.

Last week Statistics South Africa announced that South Africa had slipped into its first technical recession since 2009 following two negative quarters of economic growth.

To read the article titled " ​Nene: Recession a risk for tax revenues" click here 

 

SA owed millions : State Capture

On Sunday evening global consultancy Bain & Company unexpectedly announced it was setting aside the R164 million it earned for restricting the operational model of the SA Revenue Service (SARS) as it did not deliver “sustainable, positive” results. 

This followed two days of testimony from partner Vittorio Massone at the Nugent commission of Inquiry, who has since stepped down from his role as managing partner and will now focus on cooperating with the commission.

Has BEE been a dismal failure?

Not only is the gap between the rich and the poor in South Africa the highest in the world, inequality has increased since 1994, a World Bank report states. This is despite the ruling party’s mandate to redress inequality.

Black economic empowerment (BEE) was one of the measures intended to address the racialised inequality in South Africa. But numbers collated by the Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment Commission are not encouraging. They show that between 2015 and last year the number of black business owners has decreased from 33.5% to 27.8%.

A $50 billion fight about who owns the SA Reserve Bank

SA Reserve Bank governor Lesetja Kganyago has a fight on his hands to protect the central bank’s $50.5bn (about R741bn) of reserves.

More than eight months after the ANC decided that the SARB should be state-owned, like most other central banks, the governor said his main concern remains to protect the regulator’s independence and mandate.

But also at risk may be billions of dollars in reserves and a legal brawl that could last for years.

Corporate Social Investment - From Feeble to Forceful, Through Effective Measurement

“Corporate Social Investment (CSI) has a hard-earned reputation for flakiness,” a blogger for The Economist’s Schumpeter column recently wrote in an article about the business value of CSI.
 
Unfortunately, the perception of CSI being a light and insubstantial business matter has been one of its many challenges in the past. Thankfully, it is safe to say that today’s business leadership has evolved past the point of discrediting and devaluing CSI for having any business value.
 

Youth Service as a Solution

Many countries around the world are struggling with the ‘how to’ in implementing effective policies and interventions to address the multitude of challenges facing young people today, particularly the poor and marginalised who are generally out of school and out of work. From high levels of youth unemployment to increasing rates of alcohol and drug abuse, teenage pregnancy and growing rates of new HIV/AIDS infections, these challenges represent enormous economic and social costs to society.
 

2018 budget speech in a nutshell

Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba’s Budget Speech has seen him make “difficult decisions” to address a revenue shortfall and to fund free higher education.
An increase in value-added tax (VAT), fuel levy and a higher estate duty tax are just some of the things South Africans will be faced with this year.

On the other hand, Minister Gigaba announced some relief for the poor and the working class in the form of below inflation increase in personal income tax, while ensuring an above average increase in social grants.

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