President Jacob Zuma will address the country for the State of the Nation address on Thursday amidst calls for him to venture down. Throughout the following few days, we will take a gander at his eminent minutes as a pioneer. We’ve commenced with what he’s done well in his tenure up until this point.
Tourism arrivals were at an annual 8.9 million in 2015 (with 2016 numbers not yet out). Figures dipped in 2015 due to global recession and South Africa’s new visa laws. But indications are that they were up again in 2016 because South Africa is regarded as a safe haven and a good value destination because of SA’s exchange rate against the dollar and other global currencies.
Chinese inbound tourism is a particularly good story as it grew 85% to 7,902 arrivals in 2015, and lifted another 56% between January and October 2016. The Department of Tourism has a special programme to train young people to speak Mandarin and to learn to host Chinese tourists.
A new youth employment incentive has put many young people in work by attaching a tax incentive to employing the young. There are still an estimated three million young people of working age out of work.
The latest figures show employers claimed between R6.3 billion between January 2014 and February 2016 as part of the incentive. This supported 15% of the jobs created at that time for young people between the ages of 18 and 29 years old.
Square Kilometre Array telescope
In Carnavon, the building of the Square Kilometre Array telescope is opening up the skies from an African vantage. In addition, local science and technology skills are growing.
Bang for buck
Zuma’s term has seen a revolution in state procurement with government getting more bang for its buck from the appointment of a chief procurement office in the Treasury.
While we fight about nuclear, a solar plan to install geysers in low-cost housing areas is a sunny point in SA’s energy policy. The government has committed to installing one million solar geysers and it is currently at 500,000 installations, according to the latest State of the Nation Address.
After years of vacillation by former president Thabo Mbeki, Zuma has overseen a successful and life-saving extension of HIV/Aids medication and treatment.
It may be hectically expensive, but our fuel now moves much more quickly with the completion of a 700km pipeline from Durban to Gauteng