When will Gordhan come home?

By Janice Roberts

Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan

The question on investors’ lips this afternoon is:  Will Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan “obey” President Jacob Zuma and return home from the planned Treasury roadshows in the UK and US?

According to the Federation of Unions of South Africa (FEDUSA), its General Secretary Dennis George is committed to travelling to London tonight to meet up with Team South which arrived in the British capital this morning “at the start of an international road that will proceed to Boston and New York which and is aimed at promoting South Africa as an investor friendly destination and preempting the threat of a sovereign downgrading by the credit rating agencies.”

FEDUSA adds that its General Secretary’s flight is already booked for departure tonight and he looks forward to meeting South Africa’s delegation “consisting of Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan and business leader Jabu Mabuza. Any questions relating to the apparent cancellation of the trip should be referred to the Presidency and National Treasury”.

FEDUSA says this latest round of international roadshows would have been a follow-up of similar ones held last year, “where Team South was able to convince the credit rating agencies and investors that South African social partners were working together to tackle structural challenges facing the country.”

Dennis George says: “Engaging credit rating agencies and investors is important for the country to ensure rapid inclusive economic growth and the creation of decent jobs for our people. Investments are critical for any developing country. It is always important for social partners to work together to give hope to our people, especially the young who find themselves without jobs, and to deliver a single, positive narrative about the country when dealing with investors and credit rating agencies”.

George adds that if social partners are not working together to confront the myriad of structural challenges facing the country, it would imply that they were working against each other. “This would be self-destructive and would not take South Africa forward.”


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