Category Archives: President Cyril Ramaphosa

President Cyril Ramaphosa

ADDRESS BY PRESIDENT CYRIL RAMAPHOSA ON THE OCCASION OF THE PRESIDENTIAL INAUGURATION

Your Majesties, Kings and Queens,
Your Excellencies, Heads of State and Government,
Chairperson of SADC and President of Namibia, Dr Hage Geingob,

Former President Thabo Mbeki and Mrs Mbeki,
Former President Kgalema Motlanthe and Mrs Motlanthe,
Former President FW de Klerk and Mrs De Klerk,
All former Heads of State and Government,
Chairpersons of the African Union and African Union Commission,
Distinguished representatives of respective countries and of international organisations,
Speaker of the National Assembly,
Chairperson of the National Council of Provinces,
The Chief Justice of the Republic,
Members of the newly elected Parliament
Premiers, MECs and Mayors,
Members of Parliament,
Leaders of political parties,
Religious and traditional leaders,
Ambassadors and High Commissioners,
Veterans of our struggle,
Distinguished Guests,
Fellow South Africans,

I stand before you having just taken the oath to be President of our beautiful country South Africa. I am humbled by the trust you have bestowed upon me, aware of the challenges our country faces, but also alive to the fact that our people are filled with hope for a better tomorrow. We gather here on the day that the people of our continent celebrate the unity of Africa.It is a day of friendship, solidarity and cooperation.It is a day on which we reaffirm our common commitment to an Africa that is at peace, that is prosperous and that promises a better existence for its people.

As South Africa, we are honoured and deeply humbled by the presence here of leaders from across the African continent.
Your Excellencies,
We are profoundly grateful to you for choosing to celebrate Africa Day among us, giving further poignancy to South Africa’s transformation from a pariah state to a full and valued member of the family of African nations.

We also recognise with appreciation those countries from other continents who have joined us today.We remain eternally grateful to all nations represented here for the sacrifices and tireless contributions by your people and governments to the liberation of our land.

Today, we reaffirm our determination to work with our sisters and brothers across the continent to realise the African Union’s vision of Agenda 2063.To build the Africa that we all Africans want.To forge a free trade area that stretches from Cape Town to Cairo, bringing growth and opportunity all African countries.

To silence the guns and let peace and harmony reign.Today, we declare that our progress as South Africa depends on – and cannot be separated from – the onward march of our beloved continent Africa.

Esteemed Guests,Fellow South Africans,
Twenty-five years have passed since that glorious morning on which Nelson Rolihahla Mandela was sworn in as the first President of a democratic South Africa. In the passage of that time, our land has known both seasons of plenty and times of scarcity. Our people have felt the warm embrace of liberty.

They have rejoiced at the affirmation of their essential and equal humanity.They have found shelter and sustenance. They have found opportunity and purpose. As the shackles of oppression have fallen away, they have felt their horizons widen and their lives improve in a myriad ways. But they have also known moments of doubt. They have felt the cold shadow of a past so cruel and iniquitous that it has at times threatened to eclipse the very achievement of their hard-won freedom.

Despite our most earnest efforts, many South Africans still go to bed hungry, many succumb to diseases that can be treated, many live lives of intolerable deprivation. Too many of our people do not work especially the youth.

In recent times, our people have watched as some of those in whom they had invested their trust have surrendered to the temptation of power and riches. They have seen some of the very institutions of our democracy eroded and resources squandered. The challenges that we face are real. But they are not insurmountable.

They can be solved. And we are going to solve them.

In the face of all these challenges our people have remained resolute, resilient, unwavering in their desire for a better South Africa.

Through the irrefutable power of the ballot on 8 May, South Africans declared the dawn of a new era. They have chosen hope over hopelessness, they have opted for unity over conflict and divisions. As we give effect to their mandate, we draw comfort from the knowledge that that which unites us is far, far more powerful and enduring than that which divides us.

Despite our differences, despite a past of conflict and division and bitterness, despite the fierce political contestation among 48 political parties in recent months, we share the same hopes and fears, the same anxieties and aspirations. We all want our children to have lives that are better than our own, to have work that is dignified and rewarding. We are bound together by our determination that never again shall the adversities of our past be visited on the people of this land. This is a defining moment for our young nation.

Today is the choice of history. It is a time for us to make the future we yearn for. It is through our actions now that we will determine our destiny. South Africans want action and not just words and promises. And there will be action. It is through our actions now that we will give form to the society for which so many have fought and sacrificed and for which all of us yearn.All South Africans yearn for a society defined by equality, by solidarity, by a shared humanity. They yearn for a society in which our worth is determined by how we value others.

It is a society guided by the fundamental human principle that says: Umuntu ngumuntu ngabantu. Motho ke motho ka batho. Muthu ndi muthu nga vhangwe vhathu. Munhu yi munhu yi vanhu.

Our Constitution – the basic law of our land – continues to guide our way even at the darkest hour. As a nation we therefore can no longer abide the grave disparities of wealth and opportunity that have defined our past and which threaten to imperil our future.

It is our shared will – and our shared responsibility – to build a society that knows neither privilege nor disadvantage. It is a society where those who have much are willing to share with those who have little. It is a society where every person, regardless of race or sex or circumstance, may experience the fundamental necessities of a decent, dignified life. Today, let us declare before the esteemed witnesses gathered here that such a South Africa is possible.

Let us declare our shared determination that we shall end poverty in South Africa within a generation. Let us declare that when we gather to celebrate the 50th year of our freedom there shall no longer be any person in this land who is unable to meet their basic needs. That there should be no child who goes hungry. Every school child will be able to read, and every person who wants to work will have a reasonable opportunity to find employment. As we make this bold declaration, we are aware of the depth of the challenges we must confront.

We are aware of the debilitating legacy of our past, nor the many difficulties of the present.To achieve the South Africa we want will demand an extraordinary feat of human endeavour.
The road ahead will be difficult. We will have to use our courage, wisdom and perseverance to achieve the South Africa we want. It will require an ambition that is rare. Like our forebears who gathered so many years ago on a piece of veld in Kliptown to declare that the people shall govern, let us aspire to a future beyond the probable.

Let our reach extend beyond our grasp. Let our gaze stretch beyond the horizon.Let us – as we embark on this new era – mobilise our every resource and summon our every capability to realise the vision of our founding mothers and fathers.

Let us forge a compact – not merely as business and labour, not as those who govern and those who are governed – but as citizens and patriots of this great nation, free and equal and resolute.

Let us forge a compact for growth and economic opportunity, for productive lands and viable communities, for knowledge, for innovation, and for services that are affordable, accessible and sustainable.

Let us forge a compact for an efficient, capable and ethical state, a state that is free from corruption, for companies that generate social value and propel human development, for elected officials and public servants who faithfully serve no other cause than that of the public. We must be a society that values excellence, rewards effort and hard work and rejects mediocrity.

We must be a society that values its young people by creating a conducive environment for them to gain skills and be productively employed to develop our country. Let us celebrate the great strides we have made – demonstrated so clearly in the incoming Parliament – to raise the prominence and contribution of women in public life.

Let us work together to fundamentally, and forever, change the relations of power between men and women. Let us end the dominion that men claim over women, the denial of opportunity, the abuse and the violence, the neglect, and the disregard of each person’s equal rights.

Let us build a truly non-racial society, one that belongs to all South Africans, and in which all South Africans belong. Let us build a society that protects and values those who are vulnerable and who for too long have been rendered marginal.

A society where disability is no impediment, where there is tolerance, and where no person is judged on their sexual orientation, where no person suffers prejudice because of the colour of their skin, the language of their birth or their country of origin.

Let us preserve our natural resources for future generations, as we work with greater purpose to end the human destruction of our world.

On this Africa Day, on the day that our nation enters a new era of hope and renewal, we recall and celebrate that Africa is the birthplace of humanity.

We recall that it was around 100,000 years ago that a small group of some of the first humans set foot beyond the continent.

With them they took a sense of perseverance and a talent for innovation which enabled them to progressively occupy every corner of the world.

Humanity has achieved a great deal over the intervening millennia and all by virtue of talents which evolved in Africa.

Africa is poised once again to rise, to assume its place among the free and equal nations of the world. We must use that innovative talent that originated in Africa to embrace and use the fourth Industrial Revolution to develop Africa and create jobs for the youth and empower the women of our continent. Africa is poised to realise the vision of Pixley ka Isaka Seme more than a century ago, when he said:

“The brighter day is rising upon Africa.  “Already I seem to see her chains dissolved, her desert plains red with harvest, her Abyssinia and her Zululand the seats of science and religion, reflecting the glory of the rising sun from the spires of their churches and universities.

“Her Congo and her Gambia whitened with commerce, her crowded cities sending forth the hum of business, and all her sons [and daughters] employed in advancing the victories of peace – greater and more abiding than the spoils of war.”

It is to this brighter day that we now turn our eyes, to a vista rich with the hues of hope and promise. It is you, the people of South Africa, who have spoken. With your votes you have placed your confidence and your trust in the men and women who now sit in our sixth democratic Parliament.

These 490 men and women whom you have sent to Parliament seem to have heard the same call that the Lord made to Isaiah when He said: “Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?”  They have now said, send us. They have said Thuma Thina. You have chosen them to safeguard your rights, to improve your lives and to build a country that is united, strong and truly free.

You, the people of South Africa, have sent them, and you have sent me, as your President. Having taken the oath of office I am saying yes, South Africa Thuma Mina. And I pledge here today that I will serve you, I will work with you, side by side, to build the South Africa that we all want and deserve.

A new era has dawned in our country. A brighter day is rising upon South Africa and upon our beloved continent, Africa.
Nkosi Sikelel’ Afrika.
I thank you.

mplement BNC decision, ministers and officials told.

JOINT COMMUNIQUE ON THE THIRD SESSION OF THE BI-NATIONAL COMMISSION BETWEEN ZIMBABWE AND SOUTH AFRICA, 7 – 12 MARCH 2019, HARARE, ZIMBABWE

1. At the invitation of His Excellency, Cde Emmerson Dambudzo MNANGAGWA, President of the Republic of Zimbabwe, His Excellency, Cde Matamela Cyril RAMAPHOSA, President of the Republic of South Africa, paid an Official Visit to Zimbabwe from 11 – 12 March 2019, for the Third Session of the Bi-National Commission (BNC) between the two countries. President Ramaphosa was accompanied by five (5) Cabinet Ministers.

2. The Third Session was preceded by the meetings of the Ministers on 11 March 2019 and Senior Officials from 7 – 8 March 2019.

3. During the meeting, the two Heads of State held discussions with a view to further strengthening and deepening bonds of friendship and cooperation between Zimbabwe and South Africa. They also exchanged views on regional, continental and international issues of mutual interest.

4. The two Presidents underlined the close and friendly bilateral ties deeply rooted in shared history, sustained and nourished through growing economic partnership, multifaceted cooperation as well as vibrant people-to-people contacts.

5. The discussions were held in a cordial atmosphere.

6. The two Heads of State welcomed the positive outcomes of the Third BNC held in Harare in 2019. They directed the Ministers and Officials to implement the decisions taken by the Heads of State to further cement the strategic bilateral partnership.

7. The two sides emphasized the importance of expanding trade and investment to drive the strategic engagement forward. In this regard, the Heads of State directed their Finance and Trade Ministers to work together to achieve these goals.

8. Zimbabwe highlighted the key initiatives taken by Government to improve the ease of doing business in the country and further informed on the country’s efforts to simplify and rationalize investment rules with the view to attract foreign direct investment.

9. The relevant Ministries agreed to consider options for expanding the standing Facility arrangement between the respective Central Banks. Other Financing Options beyond this are also being explored (for example a facility from South African private banks to the Zimbabwe private sector and guaranteed by the South African Government, with an appropriate counter-guarantee from the Zimbabwe Government).

10. They also agreed to work together on re-engagement with the International Co-operating Partners in support of Zimbabwe’s economic reform and Debt Arrears Clearance Agenda.

11. Zimbabwe expressed appreciation for the unwavering commitment of the Government and people of South Africa in calling for the removal of illegal and unwarranted sanctions which are stifling the country’s economic recovery programme.

12. The two Leaders unequivocally called for the removal of sanctions on Zimbabwe whose adverse effects have been far-reaching across the political and socio-economic spectrums.

13. The two Presidents emphasized the importance of enhancing strategic bilateral engagement, particularly in defence and security cooperation, to accomplish the common interests of the two countries and their peoples.

14. At the multilateral level, the Commission welcomed the convergence of views on regional, continental and international issues and agreed to further harmonize their positions especially in view of South Africa’s non-permanent membership of the UN Security Council and its upcoming assumption of the Chair of the African Union in 2020.

15. Zimbabwe expressed goodwill and confidence in the successful holding of elections in South Africa which will take place on 8 May 2019.

16. The two leaders expressed their deepest condolences to the Government and the people of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia and all other nations on the sad loss of lives in the recent air disaster involving flight ET302.

17. At the conclusion of the BNC, His Excellency, Cde Matamela Cyril Ramaphosa expressed gratitude to His Excellency, Cde Emmerson Dambudzo Mnangagwa and the people of the Republic of Zimbabwe for the warm welcome and hospitality accorded to him and his delegation.

18. His Excellency, President Ramaphosa extended an invitation to his counterpart, His Excellency, President Mnangagwa, to attend the Fourth Session of the BNC, to be hosted by South Africa in 2020, on a date to be agreed and communicated through diplomatic channels.

Harare, 12 March 2019

President Cyril Ramaphosa

TEAM SA READY TO PRESENT IMPROVED INVESTMENT PROPOSITION AT 2019 WORLD ECONOMIC FORUM

JOHANNESBURG, 16 JANUARY 2019 – President Cyril Ramaphosa will be leading South Africa’s delegation to the world’s most important meeting of global CEOs at the 2019 World Economic Forum (WEF), taking place in Davos, Switzerland next week. The primary objective of the South African delegation will be to strengthen partnerships and collaboration for inclusive economic growth and development in South Africa, with particular emphasis on increasing international investment into the country.

“We are going to Davos to interact with potential investors”. We are competing with other emerging markets where there is an oasis of investment opportunities for global investors and it’s where we want to be seen to be investing. We have a place of pride at Davos. We are recognised and accepted as being serious players. Some of our countrymen and women even play a role in the structures of WEF in Davos and we are going to speak with one language and the same message: South Africa is like a plane that is getting ready to take off,” the President said at a pre-WEF breakfast in Rosebank today. He was addressing Team South Africa, comprising Government Ministers and business leaders who will be accompanying him as part of the Team SA delegation.

One of the focus areas for the team will be to showcase South Africa’s preparedness for the Fourth Industrial Revolution, in line with this year’s WEF  theme: “Globalization 4.0: Shaping a Global Architecture in the Age of the Fourth Industrial Revolution”.

The Forum will enable South Africa to build on the success of the President’s Investment Conference in October last year where R290 billion was raised for future investments.

“We are on the right track. We had to deal with very difficult challenges in the past but those are challenges we are finding solutions to. We must put our best foot forward, we must go and engage the world with great confidence knowing we are representing this great country. We are going to start seeing improved growth in our economy and I think we can go with our heads held high, without arrogance, to tell our story, what we have done and how we have made progress.”

The President together with Team SA will participate in a WEF Country Strategy Dialogue on South Africa on Wednesday, 23 January. This will focus on deepening understanding of current investment opportunities and challenges, as well as exploring new avenues to help enable the country to achieve the President’s investment target of $100 billion in the next five years. The session will be attended by investors, leading business leaders and experts.

“We have turned the corner, it’s a new Dawn. We can confidently go back and say, remember what we told you, this is what we have done. As I often say, we are like a plane about to take off.”

On Thursday, 24 January, Brand South Africa together with ABSA and Invest SA will host a South Africa Investment Seminar with a goal to support and initiate the next phase of the country’s investment drive. Potential investors will have the opportunity to hear from – and engage with – South Africa government and business representatives.

Lastly, Team South Africa will entertain guests at a Brand South Africa Night Dinner with investors and potential investors where the best of South Africa’s cuisine will be showcased with Chef Benny.

The President has confirmed the following ministers will be joining him to participate at WEF this year:

  • Minister of Finance Tito Mboweni;
  • Minister of Department of International Relations and Cooperation, Lindiwe Sisulu;
  • Minister of Trade and Industry, Rob Davies;
  • Minister of Public Enterprise Pravin Gordhan;
  • Minister of Economic Development, Ebrahim Patel;
  • Minister of Communications, Stella Ndabeni-Abrahams and;
  • Minister of Health Aaron Motsoaledi.
President Cyril Ramaphosa & Tito Mboweni

STATEMENT BY PRESIDENT RAMAPHOSA ON POSITION OF FINANCE MINISTER

Fellow South Africans,

Over the course of the last few days there has been much discussion among South Africans on matters that arose in the course of the testimony of Minister Nhlanhla Nene at the Commission of Inquiry into State Capture.

As a consequence of these developments, Minister Nene submitted a letter of resignation this morning in which he requested that I relieve him of the position of the Minister of Finance.

He has indicated that there is risk that the developments around his testimony will detract from the important task of serving the people of South Africa, particularly as we work to re-establish public trust in government.

After due consideration of the evidence presented by Minister Nene at the Commission, and in the interests of good governance, I have decided to accept his resignation.

During his tenure as Minister of Finance, Mr Nene served the people and government of South Africa with diligence and ability.

Under difficult circumstances and often under great pressure, he consistently defended the cause of proper financial management and clean governance.

It is a measure of his character and his commitment to the national interest that he has taken this decision to resign in the wake of errors of judgment, even though he has not been implicated in acts of wrongdoing.

I wish to take this opportunity to thank him for his service to the nation.

In the wake of Mr Nene’s resignation, I have decided to appoint Mr Tito Mboweni as Minister of Finance with immediate effect.

As former governor of the South African Reserve Bank and, before that, as Minister of Labour, Mr Mboweni brings to this position vast experience in the areas of finance, economic policy and governance.

Mr Mboweni takes on this responsibility at a critical moment for our economy, as we intensify cooperation among all social partners to increase investment, accelerate growth and create jobs on a substantial scale.

This moment calls for strong, capable and steady leadership that will unlock new opportunities as we grow and transform our economy.

I am confident that Mr Mboweni will provide that leadership.

Allow me to conclude with a few remarks about the Commission of Inquiry into State Capture.

It is critical that the Commission has the means and opportunity to effectively fulfil its mandate.

In this process, no person should be above scrutiny, and all relevant and credible accusations of wrongdoing should be thoroughly investigated.

It is incumbent upon any person who may have knowledge of any of the matters within the Commission’s mandate to provide that information to the Commission, to do so honestly and to do so fully.

For the country to move forward, we need to establish the full extent of state capture, identify those responsible for facilitating it, and take decisive steps to prevent it happening again.

Throughout this process, we need to be guided by the values and principles of our Constitution, mindful of the importance of due process, committed to good governance, and determined that, with the support of all South Africans, the Commission of Inquiry will succeed in fulfilling its critical mandate.

Once more, I wish to thank Mr Nene for his tireless service to the country, and wish Mr Mboweni well in his new role.

I thank you.

Minister Edna Molewa

PRESIDENT RAMAPHOSA ANNOUNCES PASSING AWAY OF MINISTER EDNA MOLEWA

President Cyril Ramaphosa has announced, with profound sadness, that Minister of Environmental Affairs Ms Edna Molewa passed away today, Saturday 22 September 2018, after a period of illness.

Minister Molewa passed away at a Pretoria hospital.

“I offer my deepest condolences to the family of Minister Edna Molewa as well as to her colleagues in Cabinet and across all spheres of government who have had the privilege to work alongside an extraordinary leader of our people.

“This is a devastating loss to our nation and to the global community who owe a great debt of gratitude to the late Minister Molewa for her championship nationally and globally for the environmental integrity of a sustainable planet Earth that can be shared and enjoyed by all nations and all people, rich and poor.

“Minister Molewa has distinguished herself in many capacities and causes from her contribution to our liberation to fighting for equality of women in our society. We shall miss her greatly.”

President Ramaphosa has declared a period of mourning with immediate effect and ordered that the National Flag be flown at halfmast at all flag stations countrywide and at South African diplomatic missions abroad.

Details of commemorative events and funeral arrangements will be communicated in due course.

President Ramaphosa, who is due to travel to New York later today for his inaugural participation as Head of State and Government in the United Nations National Assembly, is due to visit the Molewa family in the course of the day.

Media Enquiries: Khusela Diko, Spokesperson – 072 854 5707

ISSUED BY THE PRESIDENCY OF THE REPUBLIC OF SOUTH AFRICA

CYRIL RAMAPHOSA

STATEMENT BY PRESIDENT CYRIL RAMAPHOSA ON LAUNCH OF NEW INVESTMENT DRIVE

In the State of the Nation Address in February, I announced that a central priority for government this year is to encourage significant new investment in our economy.

This is a necessary condition for the growth of our economy and the creation of jobs on a scale that will significantly reduce current levels of unemployment.

New investment in productive sectors of the economy is therefore vital to our efforts to reduce poverty and inequality. Investment in our economy has declined in recent years.

While total fixed investment in our economy stood at 24% of GDP in 2008, it has declined to around 19% last year. The National Development Plan says we need to increase this to at least 30% of GDP by 2030.

Foreign direct investment declined from around R76 billion in 2008 to just R17.6 billion last year
This has been driven by low business confidence and regulatory uncertainty; and has resulted in slow growth, along with poor growth in employment.

Economic conditions in the country are changing, however, and we are determined to work with all social partners to seize the opportunities that are opening up for greater investment and faster growth.

In line with our commitment in the State of the Nation Address, we are therefore launching an ambitious new investment drive. This drive will culminate in an Investment Conference to be held in August or September 2018.

The Investment Conference, which will involve domestic and international investors in equal measure, is not intended merely as a forum to discuss the investment climate.

Rather, we expect the Conference to report on actual investment deals that have been concluded and to provide a platform for would-be investors to seek out opportunities in the South African market.

We are determined that the Conference produce results that can be quantified and quickly realised. We are aiming through the Investment Conference to generate at least US$ 100 billion in new investments over the next five years.

Given the current rates of investment, this is an ambitious but realisable target that will provide a significant boost to our economy.

In preparation for the Investment Conference, I have decided to appoint four Special Envoys on Investment, who will spend the next few months engaging both domestic and foreign investors on the opportunities that exist in this country.

These are people with valuable experience in the world of business and finance and extensive networks across major markets.

I am therefore pleased and grateful that the following South Africans have accepted our invitation to be the President’s Special Envoys on Investment:

– Mr Trevor Manuel, former Minister of Finance,
– Mr Mcebisi Jonas, former Deputy Minister of Finance,
– Ms Phumzile Langeni, Executive Chairperson of Afropulse Group and a non-executive director of several leading South African companies,
– Mr Jacko Maree, Chairman of Liberty Group and former CEO of Standard Bank.

They will be travelling to major financial centres in Asia, Middle East, Europe and the Americas to meet with potential investors.

A major part of their responsibility will be to seek out investors in other parts of Africa, from Nairobi to Lagos and from Dakar to Cairo.

This is part of a broader push by government to advance economic integration in the Southern African region and across the continent.

In addition to the processes we must undertake within the country to finalise our participation in the African Continental Free Trade Area, we will also be pursuing other initiatives to promote intra-African cooperation on investment, infrastructure development, tourism and agriculture.

I am also pleased to announce the appointment of Ms Trudi Makhaya as my economic adviser. Among her immediate responsibilities will be the coordination of the work of these Special Envoys and a series of investment roadshows in preparation for the Investment Conference.

The engagements that we expect to take place will also be part of a process towards the establishment of a Presidential Council on Investment.

This evening, I will be departing for London to participate in the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting.

We will use this opportunity to meet with several major global companies to brief them on recent developments in the country and on our assessment of the economic challenges, risks and opportunities.

We will be communicating a clear and consistent message – that South Africa is an investment destination with significant unrealised potential.

Some of our fundamental strengths are well known. We have a thriving democracy, an independent judiciary and strong institutions. We have an advanced and diverse economy, a sophisticated and well-regulated financial sector, and extensive transport, telecommunications and energy infrastructure.

We also have a youthful population, an improving basic education system and significantly expanded higher education enrolment. In other words, despite the challenges, we are working hard to build our skills base.

We will brief investors on the measures we are undertaking to improve the investment environment.

Further to the announcements we made in the State of the Nation Address, we are making progress in stabilising strategic state owned enterprises, improving the functioning of key institutions like SARS, finalising a new Mining Charter through consultation with all stakeholders, processing legislation for the implementation of the National Minimum Wage and the promotion of labour stability, and launching the Youth Employment Service to increase the employability of first-time job seekers.

In addition, work is underway to rationalise and streamline investment regulations and reduce the cost of establishing and running businesses.

Through the more effective use of industrial incentives, special economic zones and local procurement requirements, we aim to increase investment in manufacturing and related sectors.

We are creating more opportunities for new market entrants through our competition policy, preferential procurement measures and expanded support to small and medium-sized businesses.

After several difficult years, South Africa is emerging as an increasingly attractive destination for investment. We are encouraged by the growth in business confidence over the last few months, the strengthened rand and improved growth estimates.

We welcome the recent assessment by Goldman Sachs that South Africa is at the top of the list of potential candidates to be the “next big emerging market story” of 2018. It notes that the growth cycle is picking up after an earlier downturn in investment growth. It says that improved confidence is likely to lead to a better outlook for growth and investment.

This is confirmed by the South African Economic Update released this month by the World Bank. While the economy’s performance is improving, it notes that higher growth will require ambitious structural policies. It estimates that a successful conclusion of the Mining Charter deliberations, for example, could increase investment in the sector by 25 percent.

It is for these reasons that we are embarking on an ambitious investment drive alongside the implementation of necessary economic reforms.
South Africa has entered a new era of hope and confidence.

The task we have now is to ensure that this becomes an era of investment, growth, job creation and meaningful economic transformation.

I thank you.

President Cyril Ramaphosa

PRESIDENT RAMAPHOSA URGES SOUTH AFRICA TO #PRESSFORPROGRESS IN 2018

South Africa joins the international community in observing International Women’s Day today, Thursday 8 March 2018, under the theme #PressforProgress.

International Women’s Day has been a global institution focused on equality for women since it was first observed by the Suffragettes in 1911.

President Cyril Ramaphosa has called on all South Africans to use International Women’s Day 2018 to decide what they can do in their personal lives, communities, businesses and organisations to advance all aspects of gender equality.

President Ramaphosa said South Africans should dedicate International Women’s Day 2018 to the memory of Albertina Nontsikelelo Sisulu, whose centenary is being celebrated this year. She was a courageous leader both of the struggle for national liberation and of the struggle for gender emancipation.

“We have a responsibility to the memory of Ma Sisulu and to the many women who walked alongside her to intensify the struggle for gender equality in all areas of life.”

“We must work together to significantly improve the status of women – and especially young women – in the economy, ensuring that we achieve gender parity. Women must be equally represented in the workplace and must receive equal pay,” he said.

President Ramaphosa said society needs to tackle the economic and social factors that prevent young women from completing school and accessing further education. Government will strengthen the support it provides to women entrepreneurs and business people.

President Ramaphosa said the success of society’s efforts to grow the economy and create jobs will be measured in large part by the impact it has on the lives of South African women.

President Ramaphosa said: “South Africa has made great strides since the advent of democracy to advance and affirm women as part of building a non-racial, non-sexist, prosperous and united country.

“At the same time, we are confronted with the reality of women continuing to experience discrimination and disadvantage at home and in the workplace.

“The renewal off our country must entail a renewal of societal values that will position women and men alongside one another in a nation of equals. Patriarchy has no place in the South Africa we are building today.”

President Ramaphosa urges South Africans from all walks of life to join the global campaign, #PressforProgress, and play an active part in creating a better life for women in the country and around the world.