Africa's Ramaphosa: Land Expropriation Won't Be 'Smash and Grab'

  • Africa's Ramaphosa: Land Expropriation Won't Be 'Smash and Grab'

Africa's Ramaphosa: Land Expropriation Won't Be 'Smash and Grab'

Following the appointment of the nation's new President, Cyril Ramaphosa, the raise in tax seeks to narrow the deficit and reduce debt.

Ramaphosa, who took over from Zuma last week, thanked the former president for his contribution to South Africa's development during his nine years in office.

"This is a tough, but hopeful budget", commented Malusi Gigaba, South Africa's Finance Minister.

According to Gigaba, lower-income households will not suffer too greatly from the rise in Value-Added Tax, due to the zero-rating food items - such as maize and beans.

Yet despite the early optimism of Madlala and others, some economists and analysts caution there may be no quick fix for an economy that is forecast to grow just 1.4 percent this year and 1.7 percent in 2019.

Further gains were curbed by Northam Platinum which fell 2.55 percent to 42.88 rand after the mid-tier South African miner reported a widened half-year loss citing costs related to a transaction to increase its black ownership profile.

The budget allocates an additional 57 billion rand over the next three years to finance a plan announced by Zuma late last year to fund free post-school education for poor students.

Last week the party elected him head of state as Zuma resigned under political pressure.

Forecasts in October that projected gross debt ballooning to more than 60 percent of GDP were pared back.

Gigaba, who is widely seen as a Zuma loyalist, jokingly asked Ramaphosa "how much time do I have, sir?" as he started to deliver his speech.

Minister Gigaba "has this tainted history and the problem with him delivering the budget is that people know that he has been involved so intimately with the state capture project" and "cannot signal to worldwide markets a credible turnaround", said Georg. On the eve of the shooting, Ramaphosa said in an email discussion between Lonmin and government officials that incidents of violence around the strike were "plainly dastardly criminal acts and must be characterised as such". "There is positive sentiment".

"(Ramaphosa) has made some bland, very nice sounding statements about what he is going to do, but the proof is in the eating of the pudding", said opposition Democratic Alliance´s shadow finance minister Alf Lees.