Finance

Will Tito simply balance the books or throw the book at power?

Having ascended to the second-most-important job in politics, he should contemplate this Ratings agencies, taxpayers, investors and hard-pressed consumers will focus laser-attention on the pronouncements of new finance minister Tito Mboweni when he delivers his “maiden” mini-budget speech in parliament this afternoon. But there is nothing virginal about Mboweni’s cabinet status. He returns to the [...]

By |2018-10-24T07:03:15+00:00October 24th, 2018|Finance, Finance Minister, FW de Klerk, Uncategorized|0 Comments

Can our finance minister come up with a credible reform plan?

'Neither Nene nor his credible successor has such fires to light under the embers of our weak economy' Nearly one hundred years ago, Danish physicist and philosopher Niels Bohr wrote that ‘ The opposite of a fact is a falsehood, but the opposite of one profound truth may  be another profound truth’. These past five [...]

By |2018-10-10T13:58:59+00:00October 10th, 2018|Finance, Finance Minister, Uncategorized|0 Comments

It’s land now. Will it end with the death penalty?

The trouble with changing the Constitution is that it opens the Pandora's Box of populism Last week, South Africa endured a terrible, awful and simply bad few days. Problem is that our troubles are now arriving, to channel Shakespeare, ‘not as single spies but in battalions.’ Emerging market contagion was the start of it, currency [...]

By |2018-09-13T08:48:40+00:00September 13th, 2018|Cyril Ramaphosa, Finance, South African Politics|0 Comments

Corporate world afraid to unite against the presidential road to ruin

Fearful kakophony drowns business voice, writes Tony Leon. 'Who do I call when I want to speak to Europe?" Apparently, Henry Kissinger never uttered this great quip attributed to him, on the impossibility of receiving a coherent and unified response from the EU. But the line is useful shorthand right now, with local substitution, to [...]

South Africa: Between a snafu and a fubar

On Zuma's watch, growth has halved, the national debt has doubled and another million are unemployed THERE‘S a grim choice confronting the US electorate in November between the two most unpopular candidates in polling history. This caused Harvard history professor Niall Ferguson — one of the most erudite and eloquent people on the planet — [...]

Snapshots of greed, gestures of change, and genuine hope

Political gestures can be low-cost or ultra-expensive, harmless or dangerous, provide evidence of sunset on the old order or can morph into a false dawn. Political assassinations are at the extreme end of such symbolism. One hundred and two years ago, the murder in Sarajevo of Archduke Franz Ferdinand, heir to the Austro-Hungarian Empire, famously [...]

The Big Read: Looking for someone to blame

It's difficult to capture in a headline the essence of what is going on, and going wrong in South Africa right now. If you were to borrow the title from the world of books, perhaps Beryl Bainbridge's slim 1996 classic of the night the Titanic sank Every Man for Himself, would be a handy summary. [...]

Can Gordhan’s Black Knight survive the repeated attacks?

There is merriment on social media, writes Tony Leon, but Zuma is in a deadly serious battle for the economy as he shrugs off election losses and takes SOEs under his control. Memes - those social media images that go viral on the internet - were in overdrive this week to herald the improbable trifecta [...]

A betting guide to Jacob Zuma’s survival

Zuma knows where, figuratively at least, all the bodies are buried and who has been caught in the web of intelligence networks he controls For those of us who grew up under the unlamented apartheid regime, racial repression was lashed onto dour Calvinism. This meant that everything from cinemas on Sunday to television (until 1976, [...]

President’s qualified apology echoes typical irresponsibility

FRIDAY night’s prime-time television performance by President Jacob Zuma, on the back of the devastating Constitutional Court judgment the day before, was something to behold. It is capable of almost endless interpretations, although the path forward remains unclear. Gone was the customary giggle, the chuckle and the rictus. Zuma’s qualified and exceedingly rare apology was [...]