Ramaphosa: It’s not only Hlaudi Motsoeneng who’s talking about local

The deputy president says govt is on a mission to encourage citizens to support local businesses.

FILE: Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa. Picture: Reinart Toerien/EWN

JOHANNESBURG - Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa has called on South Africans to expand local procurement and stimulate the provincial economy.

The deputy president, who was speaking at the Gauteng Economic Indaba in Sandton yesterday, says government is on a mission to encourage citizens to support local businesses.

"It is not only Hlaudi at the SABC who is talking about local, we are also talking about local."

He says initiatives like the local procurement accord provides platforms for social partners.

Ramaphosa says that by buying local, South Africans can create opportunities for progress.

RAMAPHOSA RESPONDS TO SA'S LATEST CREDIT RATING

Ramaphosa says it was through labour, government and business working together that the county was able to avoid rating downgrades.

Yesterday, ratings agency Fitch affirmed South Africa's investment grade credit rating at BBB- and maintained the stable outlook for Africa's most industrialised country but said politics posed a risk, strengthening the rand.

Ramaphosa says without consensus, the country would have been in a different situation today.

In its statement, Fitch said the BBB- rating reflected low trend GDP growth, significant fiscal and external deficits and high debt levels, which are balanced by strong policy institutions, deep local capital markets and a favourable government debt structure.

'GOVT HAS A DUTY TO HELP YOUNG PEOPLE FIND JOBS'

Meanwhile, the deputy president says government has a duty to help young people find jobs and should support young entrepreneurs.

"We must trust young people and give them the resources and opportunities to grow."

Gauteng Premier David Makhura echoed his sentiments, and has called for the provincial economy to be de-racialised.

He says while employment is a key issue, the province must address structural issues in the economy.

"We have to deal with the problem of a racialised ownership structure in the economy."

He says black people must be brought into the mainstream industry and become key players.

Additional reporting by Reuters.