FILE PIC: Malusi Gigaba at a news conference in Pretoria, South Africa, after he was announced as the new finance minister by president Jacob Zuma, Friday, March 31, 2017 replacing sacked minister Pravin Gordhan. The firing of Gordhan on Friday sent the currency tumbling by close to 5 percent and brought fresh anger at Zuma as a split in the ruling party deepened. (AP Photo)

In The News South Africa

Gigaba has shown SA will stick to fiscal discipline – Cabinet

CAPE TOWN – South African Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba’s interaction with investors and the global finance community has shown that government would stick to the course of fiscal discipline and consolidation charted by his predecessor, Cabinet said on Friday.

“These engagements underscored that government’s policy orientation towards prudent fiscal discipline and stringent fiscal consolidation as highlighted in the 2017 National Budget will remain unchanged,” Cabinet said in statement issued a week after its first meeting since the reshuffle at the end of March in which Pravin Gordhan was fired.

Communications Minister Ayanda Dlodlo said Gigaba did not attend the Cabinet meeting, and that no reference was made to the sweeping reshuffle, except to welcome new ministers.

The Cabinet statement did not mention the downgrading of the South Africa’s credit rating to junk by S&P Global and Fitch in the week that followed the reshuffle, but welcomed the country’s return to the A.T. Kearney’s 2017 Foreign Direct Investment Confidence report, landing at number 25 on the index.

Dlodlo said she believed Cabinet would discuss the downgrade at its next meeting.

“Cabinet did not discuss the issue of ratings. The minister of finance was not in Cabinet and I think issues around the financial outlook will be discussed at the next Cabinet when he is in attendance,” Dlodlo said.

Cabinet noted that Gigaba attended meetings of the World Bank and International Monetary fund in the United States, and also engaged with the Nedlac special executive committee chaired by Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa.

– African News Agency (ANA)

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