We avoided junk status‚ now we must move on reforms: DA - Times LIVE
Fri May 26 01:54:54 SAST 2017

We avoided junk status‚ now we must move on reforms: DA

Genevieve Quintal | 2016-06-03 19:48:31.0
David Maynier. File photo
Image by: Times Media

South Africa has dodged an economic bullet as rating agency Standard and Poor's affirmed it's credit rating on Friday‚ the Democratic Alliance (DA) said.

S&P kept South Africa's short-term foreign and local currency bond rating at BBB-/A-3 and BBB+/A-2 respectively.

"That Standard and Poor's did not downgrade us feels like a miracle given President Jacob Zuma's 'dirty war' against Minister of Finance Pravin Gordhan and national Treasury‚" DA's shadow minister of finance David Maynier said.

He said government now needed to get behind Gordhan and implement structural reforms needed to boost economic growth‚ reduce unemployment and turnaround state owned enterprises.

Apparent tension between Zuma and Gordhan has‚ in the past‚ affected currency and investor sentiment. The presidency has denied that there were tensions.

The ANC's economic transformation head‚ Enoch Godongwana‚ in welcoming S&P's decision said issues of "cohesion" within the executive branch of government were being attended to.

He remained optimistic that the country would not fall to junk status in December.

Maynier said South Africa could not underestimate the consequences of a sovereign ratings downgrade to junk status. Citing a "leading economist"‚ he said this could trigger a recession.

"It will affect everyone and spare no one in South Africa‚" he said.


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