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Impact of divestment will be dire - we need govt action to restore trust in SA

4 August 2020 6:49 PM
Tags:
The Money Show
Bruce Whitfield
Centre for Development and Enterprise
Ann Bernstein
SA Business Confidence
Coronavirus
Lockdown
COVID-19
SA Inc

'You have to wonder, where is leadership in our society now?' Bruce Whitfield interviews the CDE's Ann Bernstein.

The list of big companies suspending their capital expenditure and expansion plans amid government's lockdown regulations is growing.

Particularly contentious are the renewed bans on the sale of alcohol and cigarettes - one of the latest casualties is Consol Glass' planned R1.5 billion investment in its manufacturing plant.

Consol's decision to cancel the R1.5 billion capacity expansion is due to the combined effect of the first nine-week alcohol ban and the second ban which is still continuing... If the second ban continues, without clarity on its duration, it will now place at risk some 25,000 direct and indirect jobs in the industry supply chain.

Mike Arnold, CEO - Consol Glass

Bruce Whitfield interviews Ann Bernstein, executive director of the Centre for Development and Enterprise (CDE).

Listening to the comments from the ANC and government makes her wonder whether they appreciate "just how bad" things are.

RELATED: SA Inc is lobbying intensely for permission to start producing again

Bernstein says facing reality would require much greater urgency to unlock the economy and preserve jobs.

Even considering the multiple crises before Covid... we are now in a much worse situation and I must say I am surprised that there isn't a bigger reaction to say: We have to think differently, we have to act urgently and we have to get the economy going again!

Ann Bernstein, Executive director - Centre for Development and Enterprise

You do have to wonder, where is leadership in our society now?

Ann Bernstein, Executive director - Centre for Development and Enterprise

The strategic dilemma of South Africa is that we have an incredibly weak and corrupt state. There are obviously a few pockets of excellence remaining - the Reserve Bank, the National Treasury - but overall, local government, provincial government, we're just weak, it's a weak state.

Ann Bernstein, Executive director - Centre for Development and Enterprise

Yet we have a private sector that can help deliver, but we continue to believe in a development state and a much bigger role for the state when it's patently failed!

Ann Bernstein, Executive director - Centre for Development and Enterprise

That's one of the big shifts we have to make in this society if we're going to start making progress...

Ann Bernstein, Executive director - Centre for Development and Enterprise

Whitfield also gets comment from Pick n Pay chairperson Gareth Ackerman, former Goldman Sachs partner Colin Coleman and Absa's Mike Keenan.

Listen to the discussion in the clip below:


This article first appeared on 702 : Impact of divestment will be dire - we need govt action to restore trust in SA


4 August 2020 6:49 PM
Tags:
The Money Show
Bruce Whitfield
Centre for Development and Enterprise
Ann Bernstein
SA Business Confidence
Coronavirus
Lockdown
COVID-19
SA Inc

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