ANC mulls nationalisation of Reserve Bank – but says independence should be guaranteed

05 July 2017 - 18:04
By Olebogeng Molatlhwa And Sibongakonke Shoba
The South African Reserve Bank building in Pretoria. File photo.
Image: GALLO IMAGES The South African Reserve Bank building in Pretoria. File photo.

The ANC is mulling over the idea of nationalising the SA Reserve Bank but says its independence should be guaranteed.

Addressing the media on the outcome of discussions in the economic transformation commission at the ANC’s national policy conference‚ party head of economics transformation sub committee Enoch Godongwana said that private ownership of the SARB was an "anomaly". However‚ he said that come what may‚ the independence of the Reserve Bank should be guaranteed.

"The independence of the Reserve Bank is sacrosanct and there is no intention in the recommendations (from the policy conference) to tamper with that.

"It must remain independent."

In the lead-up to the policy conference‚ there had been a strong push to nationalise the Reserve Bank and bring it completely under the control of the government.

But Godongwana explained that‚ while the Reserve Bank had over 650 shareholders‚ their influence over the bank's mandate and decision-making was "neither here nor there".

He said even if the bank were to be nationalised‚ South Africans would still not be able to interfere in its operational mandate.

The proposal will be taken to branches for further discussion before it is again tabled before the national conference in December for possible adoption as policy.

On calls for a state bank‚ Godongwana said: "Our intention is that by the time we get to the conference‚ we should have clarified (the formation of a state bank)."

- TimesLIVE