Public finances are crucial to transformation: Nene - CNBC Africa

Public finances are crucial to transformation: Nene

Southern Africa

by Trust Matsilele 0

South Africa's finance minister says the country's public finances are fundamental to economic transformation. PHOTOS: GCIS

Nene said public finances were the foundation on which to build lasting social and economic progress.

(READ MORENene shrinks government spending in his debut mini-budget)

“Public finances will also make it easier for government to cushion the economy should another economic or financial storm come to our shores,” he said calling for ideas in the forthcoming 2015 budget.

“The budget framework we announced in October seeks to restore balance to public finances, boost investment, and ensure that we improve the efficiency and effectiveness of the expenditure of public funds.”

Nene added that, in line with the National Development Plan (NDP), the country’s medium term objective was to ensure that government spending promotes economic growth and enables increased investment by the private sector.

“In October last year, we said that government had no option but to adjust expenditure and increase taxes so as to return our fiscus to a sustainable path,” said Nene.

“This decision was informed by the difficult economic environment, both locally and globally, as well as the high level of debt government has accumulated since the onset of the global financial crisis in 2008.”

(READ MORES.Africa economy performing below potential: finance minister)

Nene said among others his department sought ideas on how to change the dynamics of cities to improve living conditions, modernise transport and communications infrastructure and expand economic activity.

The finance minister also solicited for ideas to help reinforce government support for exporting businesses and improve their competitiveness and by so doing increase the capacity of our economy to create more jobs.

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