The medium-term budget policy statement tabled in Parliament on 30 October 2019 is a wake-up call. It shows unequivocally that the path South Africa is on is unsustainable.
Finance Minister Tito Mboweni announced that forecasts of annual economic growth have been revised downwards to 0,5%, while revenue from tax collection is likely to be 4% lower than he expected just eight months ago.
Government must act now. To do otherwise is malpractice and risks condemning the country to declining real per capita incomes and increasing unemployment for a very extended period. No government can survive that for long, so it is in all of our interests that, however hard the political challenges appear, government tackles them decisively.
Given this, we absolutely have to see growth-accelerating reforms. Everybody knows this already; what has been lacking is the will to make the decisions that are needed. This will mean that vested interests will have to be confronted.