The DA’s New Economic Policy: The Plan for Growth and Jobs 2014

For many South Africans, the political freedoms achieved since 1994 have not been matched with meaningful inclusion in the economy.

Helen Zille Biko

More than one out of every four South Africans are unemployed. Around four out of every ten live below the poverty line.

Ours remains one of the most unequal societies in the world and we are not achieving the levels of economic growth required to change this picture.

There are many constraints to growth in our country, but underpinning them all is the fact that too many of our people are left out of the economy and are unable to make a contribution to driving growth because they can’t find work; they can’t access skills; they can’t start businesses; and they lack capital assets.

The Apartheid government built an economy of insiders and outsiders by denying millions of South Africans access to economic opportunities. But we still live with this legacy today.

The DA’s economic plan will help to break down the barriers between the insiders and outsiders.

In contrast, the ANC under Jacob Zuma has given up on jobs for everyone and is only interested in enriching themselves and their friends. In the Zuma ANC jobs and opportunities go to people with connections.

This has contributed to the fact that 1,4 million South Africans have joined the ranks of the unemployed since the day President Zuma took office. The number of people becoming unemployed every year is now 5 times higher than under President Mbeki.

But research published by the South African Reserve Bank in 2013 shows that policies like the DA’s can increase economic growth to 8%, help the economy to create 6 million real jobs, and halve unemployment over the next ten years.

A DA government would accelerate economic growth by expanding opportunities for South Africans to participate in the economy and for businesses to invest, grow and trade more – particularly with the rest of Africa.

We would:

1. Provide leadership on the economy: The government must provide certainty on its vision for the economy, the policy it intends to implement to realise that vision, and its commitment to ensuring that the economy serves ordinary people and not only those connected to the governing party.

2. Manage public money better: Steps must be taken to combat government corruption and to make sure that government spending decisions are taken in the best interest of all South Africans.

3. Provide direct incentives for job creation: In recognition of the impact of high unemployment on our economic growth potential, the government should directly incentivise job creation by South African businesses.

4. Make sure that labour laws support job creation: The government must ensure that labour regulations and trade union engagements achieve a balance between the protection of workers’ rights and the need for labour market flexibility in support of job creation.

Win Kouga

5. Support small businesses: The government must make it easier for South Africans to start and grow their own businesses.

6. Support redress: The government should recognise the need to broaden participation in the economy and help to make it easier for outsiders to become owners, get access to capital, and actively participate in the economy.

7. Create an enabling environment for growth: By investing in economic infrastructure and, where possible, bringing down the cost base in the economy, the government can provide an enabling environment for economic activity, growth and job creation.

8. Invest in knowledge: The government must work to give more people the education and skills they need to get a job and to support the kinds of research and development that can make South Africa a winning nation in a globalised knowledge economy.

9. Increase investment and savings: To drive economic growth, attract international investment and help South Africans to maintain quality of life during retirement and difficult times, the government should actively support both increased corporate investment and personal savings and investment.

10. Boost trade: The government must make it easier for South African businesses to trade with other countries, especially our African neighbours, so that these businesses can grow and create jobs.

If we can get these key drivers in place, the DA believes that the South African economy can grow at up to 8% per year to help create 6 millions jobs in ten years.

The DA’s economic policy will bring change and jobs to South Africa.

Help the Democratic Alliance bring positive change to South Africa by donating for change. Please click here to donate.

One Response to “The DA’s New Economic Policy: The Plan for Growth and Jobs 2014”

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