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Jonas: SA remains committed to inclusive growth & fiscal discipline

Mcebisi Jonas on Tuesday told Parliament SA is in the process of having its sovereign credit rating reviewed.

FILE: Deputy Finance Minister Mcebisi Jonas. Picture: Screengrab

CAPE TOWN – Deputy Finance Minister Mcebisi Jonas says the National Treasury has told ratings agency Fitch it remains committed to inclusive growth and fiscal discipline.

Jonas was speaking in the National Assembly during a debate on the Division of Revenue Amendment Bill, which provides for changes to budget allocations for provincial and local government.

Jonas told the House South Africa is in the process of having its sovereign credit rating reviewed by international ratings agencies.

“Today, we had a meeting with Fitch, which was focusing on what do we see as a critical way forward. It is very clear our stance remains that fiscal consolidation and inclusive growth are going to be the two central platforms moving forward.”

The finance department has been pulling out all the stops to avert a downgrade to junk status, while confronted with low growth and political tensions, including the possible prosecution of Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan.

Jonas says consolidated government spending is growing at 7.6% a year.

“So the argument that we are in austerity cannot be supported by real numbers.”

Jonas says government is committed to delivering social services and laying down the basis for future higher growth.

(Edited by Leeto M Khoza)