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Pre-recorded message by President Cyril Ramaphosa at the opening of the SA Tomorrow Investor Conference

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Governor of the South African Reserve Bank, Mr Lesetja Kganyago, Minister of Finance, Mr Enoch Godongwana,
Representatives of South Africa’s state-owned enterprises, Representatives of the business and investor community, Guests,
Ladies and Gentlemen,

It is my pleasure to open this year’s SA Tomorrow Investor Conference, which has been showcasing South Africa to international investors since 2014.

Just as the pandemic has fundamentally changed the business landscape, so too has the format of our engagements evolved.

This year’s in-person South Africa investment promotion event will take place in New York this October.

This is a welcome sign of the steady global economic recovery.

As South Africa we are encouraged at the pace of our economic recovery.

At the 4th South Africa Investment Conference earlier this year, companies committed a total of R332 billion in new investments.

This is equivalent to just over US$ 20 billion, bringing us within reach of our target of securing R1.2 trillion in new investment over five years.
 
These investments are supporting our economy’s growth.

The South African economy grew by 1.9 per cent for the first quarter of 2022.

The economy has returned to pre-pandemic levels sooner than many analysts expected.

The recovery is also evident in our trade figures.

Last year, we posted our largest trade surplus on record.

Although these figures are encouraging, we need much higher levels of investment to reach our aspiration of fixed capital formation of 30 per cent of GDP.

In pursuit of this target, we are driving a range of structural reforms to improve the business environment.

We have made significant progress already in auctioning high-demand broadband spectrum, improving port efficiency, opening some freight lines to private rail operators, improving our visa regime, and reforming state-owned enterprises.

We have set up a new red tape reduction team in the Presidency that will help clear bureaucratic and other administrative hurdles for businesses and investors.

The most far-reaching reforms are in the energy sector.

By raising the self-generation licensing threshold to 100 MW, we have enabled a surge of private investment in new generating capacity.

We are expanding our successful renewable energy programme, and helping municipalities to procure power from independent power producers.

We are also taking bold steps to decarbonise our economy.

The Just Energy Transition Partnership announced at COP26 promises to be a game- changer.

We are working with our international partners on the details of the funding and the projects it will support.

We are prioritising the green and circular economies as we work to create a reliable, stable and low-carbon electricity grid, and develop technologies to supply the world’s low carbon future.

As the world’s largest platinum producer, we are positioning ourselves to be at the forefront of green hydrogen development.
 
The South African economy is expansive, remarkably diverse, and resilient. Immense investment opportunities exist in both traditional and emerging industries. While we have many challenges, our recovery is gaining momentum.

There is reason for optimism about South Africa’s economy and its future prospects. I wish you well in your deliberations and engagements over the coming days.

We call on all investors to come to South Africa, take advantage of the many opportunities on offer, and also to be part of a growing, dynamic economy.

I thank you.