This resource is hosted by the Nelson Mandela Foundation, but was compiled and authored by Padraig O’Malley. It is the product of almost two decades of research and includes analyses, chronologies, historical documents, and interviews from the apartheid and post-apartheid eras.
1.1 A Long-run vision
As South Africa moves toward the next century, we seek:
A strategy for rebuilding and restructuring the economy is set out in this document, in keeping with the goals set in the Reconstruction and Development Programme. In the context of this integrated economic strategy, we can successfully confront the related challenges of meeting basic needs, developing human resources, increasing participation in the democratic institutions of civil society and implementing the RDP in all its facets.
1.2 Recent Economic Developments
Against the background of a successful democratic transition, the stagnation that characterised the 1980s has come to an end. Considerable progress has since been made in:
Notwithstanding these achievements, it has become increasingly evident that job creation, which is a primary source of income redistribution, remains inadequate. It is widely recognised that the present growth trajectory of about 3 percent per annum:
Recent exchange rate developments reinforce these conclusions. In February 1996 a depreciation, which was largely a purchasing power parity correction, occurred. However, the subsequent movements in the foreign exchange market reflected more fundamental economic uncertainties. The depreciation presents both an opportunity and a threat. An uncoordinated response, embroiled in conflict, will cause further crisis and contraction. Linked to an integrated economic strategy, on the other hand, it provides a springboard for enhanced economic activity.
1.3 Points of Departure
Sustained growth on a higher plane requires a transformation towards a competitive outward-oriented economy.
The strategy developed below attains a growth rate of 6 percent per annum and job creation of 400 000 per annum by the year 2000, concentrating capacity building on meeting the demands of international competitiveness. Several inter-related developments are called for:
The expansion envisaged in the above aggregates is substantial and entails a major transformation in the environment and behaviour of both the private and the public sectors. This must include:
Accompanying the macroeconomic strategy set out below, several appendices provide details and explanatory memoranda. Other coordinated policy programmes, such as the recently announced National Crime Prevention Strategy, complement this framework. Taken together, the Government's approach to development and growth builds a bridge between the present constrained environment and sustainable expansion within an increasingly competitive international context.
1.4 An Integrated Strategy
The core elements of the integrated strategy are:
It is Government's conviction that we have to mobilise all our energy in a new burst of economic activity. This will need to break current constraints and catapult the economy to the higher levels of growth, development and employment needed to provide a better life for all South Africans. We are confident that our social partners will join us in the combined efforts needed to achieve this goal.