At the Business Economic Indaba of Business Unity South Africa (BUSA) held recently with president Cyril Ramaphosa’s participation, prominent leaders of crucial business sectors outlined their inclusive growth plans and challenges they face, followed by a Question and Answer session facilitated by Prof Nick Binedell, founder and former head of the Gordon Institute of Business Science at the University of Pretoria.
Nick Binedell explained the strategy and the process of the Public Private Growth Initiative which he is actively involved in, together with former minister Roelf Meyer. The PPGI is facilitated by the In Transformation Initiative (ITI) and supported by the Hanns Seidel Foundation. Leaders of about 20 business sectors have been meeting directly with the president, ministers, directors general and senior officials from the relevant government departments to engage around their sectors' strategies for growth, investment and job creation. The discussion of specific potential policy improvements, constraints and inhibitors as well as potential drivers for growth plays an important role in the ongoing process.
Tourism, agriculture, construction, health, the automotive industry, energy and manufacturing are examples of participating sectors. At the Indaba, leaders of the banking industry and the mining sector committed to joining the initiative.
A panel of ministers from the economic cluster on "Future Perspectives through collaboration" included Ministers Pravin Gordhan, Tito Mboweni, Ebrahim Patel, Zweli Mkhize and Rob Davies. Facilitated by former Director General in the Department of Finance Lungisa Fuzile, they discussed the state of the economy and crucial next steps.
Macro-economic visions were discussed in a session which included renowned business leaders, among them Nicky Newton-King, CEO of the Johannesburg Stock Exchange, Sizwe Nxasana, former CEO of Rand Merchant Bank and founder of Future Nation Schools, Sim Tshabalala, CEO of Standard Bank, Andile Sangqu, Executive Head of Anglo-American SA, Ipeleng Mkhari, president of SAPOA, and Sipho Maseko, CEO of Telkom. One of their focus areas was education, and they also discussed the need for business in South Africa to take social value creation seriously.
President Cyril Ramaphosa himself took to the podium for a highly engaging session with Sipho Pityana, president of Business Unity South Africa. Cyril Ramaphosa gave a very frank assessment of the economy and the societal situation in South Africa, discussing the power struggle in the governing party ANC as well.
Cyril Ramaphosa explicitly praised the Public Private Growth Initiative facilitated by ITI which he called "an incredibly wonderful initiative" that works towards achieving the 5 % to 7 % growth the country needs, in the near future. He called on business leaders to continue the crucial, productive engagements which include robust discussions of government's policies and implementation.
The event drew large media interest and could also be followed via a livestream. Find a very informative article by a leading publication here:
The presidency posted a short video on the session with the PPGI, with remarks by ITI director Roelf Meyer - you can watch it here:
To learn more about the initiative and renowned former minister Roelf Meyer, one of the directors of the HSF partner ITI who played an important historic role during South Africa's transition to democracy, read this article: