President Cyril Ramaphosa said that South Africa was a viable and profitable investment destination that had a great deal to offer.
Ramaphosa was tending to the second investment conference under route in Sandton on Wednesday.
He said that South Africa’s capacity was in the form of its people, natural & mineral resources, world-class infrastructure, and a well-regulated financial and banking sector among other things.
In any case, the president didn’t avoid a portion of the structural problems that continued to haunt the country.
“Despite significant progress over the past 25 years, the legacy of our divided past has left many of our people without good skills, without assets, and without jobs. All of these factors have in many ways combined to exacerbate the poverty and the inequality that we see in our country.”
The conference was part of the government’s efforts to raise R1.2 trillion in new investment throughout the following four years to address low economic growth and reduce unemployment.
Earlier on Wednesday, Ramaphosa said that of the 31 projects which represented R238 billion in investment announced last year’s investment conference, eight had been realised and completed.
He clarified that 17 projects were in the construction and implementation phase.
He portrayed as “gratifying” to observe the duties of the inaugural conference materialising in the form of new factories, production lines, services, products, and jobs.
“And we do this not as a gimmick, we do this after close and deep collaboration with the various companies. Last year, as I said, we sought to raise R300 billion and we did and almost R240 billion of that is now committed and is now working. The other portion is going through the regulatory hoops.”
Trade and Industry Minister Ebrahim Patel said gains had just been made through investment promises made by local and international businesses at last year’s investment conference.
He was also talking at the second investment conference that officially started in Sandton.
Over R300 billion in investment responsibilities were made a year ago with major companies, for example, Aspen promising to put R3.3 billion in manufacturing while mining goliath Anglo-American submitted R14.4 billion.
Patel explained that many companies had just gotten various projects off the ground.
“There are many many others like yesterday’s sod-turning at the Tshwane auto hub or the opening of the In2Foods facility at the OR Tambo SEZ or the opening of the Procter & Gamble factory last Friday. Today is also about the future.”