Johannesburg, 26 August 2018 – Finance Minister Nhlanhla Nene will, on the first day of the 2018 Southern African Metals and Engineering Indaba, meet with Business Unity South Africa CEO Tanya Cohen, Federation of Unions of South Africa General Secretary Dennis George and Centre for Development and Enterprise Executive Director Ann Bernstein to assess what Government, Business and Labour need to do together to improve South Africa’s sovereign credit rating.

Steel and Engineering Industries Federation of Southern African CEO Kaizer Nyatsumba said the need for this plenary session to form part of the 2018 Indaba comes on the back of South Africa having suffered credit downgrade blows from global ratings agencies such as Standard & Poor’s, which last year lowered the country’s foreign and local currency ratings by one notch as a result of the further deterioration of the country’s economic outlook and its public finances.

“If nothing is done to improve South Africa’s sovereign credit downgrade, we can expect foreign investors to find favourable markets elsewhere. This will result in the further weakening of South Africa’s economy and subsequently negatively impact employment creation and social cohesion.

“There can be no new employment created without economic growth and there can be no social cohesion amidst a widening gap between the rich and the poor. It is, therefore, vitally important that we collaborate to find ways to improve our credit ratings,” Mr Nyatsumba said…