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Economic experts praise Mboweni appointment, await budget speech

With only two weeks before new Finance Minister Tito Mboweni delivers his first midterm budget, the business sector is waiting to see how he will transform the economy.

Tito Mboweni is sworn in as Finance Minister on 9 October 2018. Picture: Cindy Archillies/EWN

JOHANNESBURG – With only two weeks before new Finance Minister Tito Mboweni delivers his first midterm budget, the business sector is waiting to see how he will transform the economy.

Nhlanhla Nene resigned on Tuesday after it emerged that he lied about his meetings with the Gupta family.

He told the state capture commission of inquiry that he visited the Gupta family compound on at least four occasions, contradicting what he said during an interview with eNCA in 2016.

Stanlib chief economist Kevin Lings says that the president made the right move by appointing Mboweni.

“I expect that the credit rating agencies will also endorse the appointment and suggest that fiscal management will remain, for the moment at least, largely on track.”

Political economist Siya Biniza believes the appointment will calm the markets.

“This is very good news for the market, but I do have a worry or concern about his ability to implement some of the structural changes that were promised in part by the president but some being the decisions he must make to transform the economy.”

Economics professor at the University of Johannesburg, Fiona Tregenna, says the president made the right choice in accepting Nene's resignation.

“I think, on one hand, the departure of Minister Nene is sad in the wake of an important role that he played, particularly in terms of saving South Africa from the disastrous nuclear deal. But the disclosures were really shocking.”

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