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Government Promises To ‘Focus On Growth’ – While South Africa Sits With Load Shedding To The End Of The Week


Despite South Africa’s poor economic figures and the harmful impact of load shedding, cabinet is determined to set South Africa on a path to economic growth, says Minister in the Presidency, Jackson Mthembu.

Briefing media on the outcomes of the cabinet’s latest meeting on Thursday (12 March), Mthembu said that the government would also continue to push for growth despite the fact that South Africa is in a technical recession. 

Cabinet reflected on the release of Statistics South Africa’s report on the Gross Domestic Product which revealed that the economy slipped into a technical recession. Figures showed GDP decreasing by 1.4% in quarter 4 in 2019, Mthembu said.

“Despite acknowledging the debilitating effects of load shedding, cabinet remains resolute in fixing the fundamentals, pursue critical areas of growth and drive collaborative solutions with all social partners so that together we set the country on a path to economic growth,” said Mthembu.

“We are intensifying our investment and to date projects with an investment value of R9 billion have been completed and 27 projects worth just over R250 billion are in implementation phases, with more coming on stream this year.”

The commitment from cabinet comes after Eskom said it will continue implementing stage 4 load shedding until Friday, with blackouts continuing at various stages into the weekend as it synchronizes generating capacity to the grid.

It hopes to complete this by Sunday.

Eskom warned that the stage of load shedding may change at short notice should there be any unexpected change in the generation system performance. Demand has also risen incrementally since January, it said.

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