Some analysts expect good news ahead of Godongwana's maiden budget speech

Analysts expect some good news in the form of a decrease in the debt to GDP ratio and an overshoot in revenue collection thanks to running commodities prices.

Enoch Godongwana, Minister of Finance. Picture: Thomas Holder/EWN

JOHANNESBURG - The nation will be looking to the Finance Minister on Wednesday afternoon as he sets out to balance demands for a more comprehensive social security net with the need to curb government expenditure.

Enoch Godongwana will take centre stage at Parliament at 2pm where he will deliver his maiden, medium-term budget policy statement.

Analysts expect some good news in the form of a decrease in the debt to GDP ratio and an overshoot in revenue collection thanks to running commodities prices.

Investec's Annabel Bishop said there could also be some positive indications for the longer term.

"I think over the longer term there is some hope for a better revenue projection because of Sars improving its efficiency, really doing better at collecting taxes. You know over the past decade we have seen a big hollowing out of state institutions due to state capture; obviously SOEs have been damaged as well. And this repair and renewal of the Ramaphosa presidency is expected to bear fruit in terms of the revenue collection," Bishop said.

Analysts said they would be watching very closely for indications that government is holding the line on fiscal discipline and curbing spending as well as for details on government's specific plans to drive economic growth.

Citibank's Gina Schoeman said they were not that bullish about the nation's future growth prospects.

"We don't have a track record in South Africa of implementing many plans that we make along the way. And I would say just looking at Eskom, the 14 years of load shedding, 11 CEOs, that we're still having load shedding on a larger scale than ever before, that alone is a signal that government has not got the capacity to implement the type of reform plan that it hope to," Schoeman said.