Ramaphosa Puts Growth, Jobs at Top of South Africa's Agenda

(Bloomberg) -- South African President Cyril Ramaphosa, who has embarked on a drive to attract $100 billion in new investment, said his administration has placed economic growth and job creation at the top of its agenda, and it will ensure there is greater clarity about policy and land-ownership rights.

“No meaningful growth and no significant job creation would be possible without a massive surge in productive investment,” Ramaphosa told delegates attending an investment summit in Johannesburg where he is showcasing the country’s potential. “We are taking immediate steps to finalize reforms in key sectors like mining, oil and gas, tourism and telecommunications, all of which are sectors that have great potential for growth but which have been constrained by policy uncertainty.”

The president reassured potential investors that the ruling party’s plans to change the constitution to make it easier to expropriate land without compensation to address racially skewed ownership patterns would have no bearing on them.

“Our approach reaffirms the constitutional protection of property rights, which, among other things, prohibits the arbitrary deprivation of property,” he said. “Together with robust legislation to protect foreign investments, an independent judiciary and the firm rule of law, our constitution should allay any fears that investors may have of factories being expropriated.”

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