Mantashe: Leave mining out of sovereign wealth fund plans

Mineral Resources Minister Gwede Mantashe has revealed that he objected to a proposal of using the mining industry as one of the mechanisms to fund the country’s mooted sovereign wealth fund.

Mantashe said the idea was raised in the ruling party circles in the late stages of the drafting of the Mining Charter.

“There was a discussion about creating a sovereign wealth fund, which is a good concept. It works everywhere in the world where there are resources, whether it is mining, oil or gas,” Mantashe told leaders of the mining industry during his address at the Joburg Indaba.

“I said to them ‘you cannot milk the industry which is already on its knees’,” he told delegates.

Mantashe, who became minister in February stressed the importance of transformation as outlined in the charter which was gazetted last month.

He stressed that for the industry to be competitive, it has to be transformed and that companies must not see transformation as a requirement only needed to tick the BEE score card.

Talk of setting up a sovereign wealth fund gained momentum this year, with the ANC proposing during its lekgotla in July that the fund must be established before the start of the next term of government.

According to a report by City Press, the ANC Lekgotla proposed that a sovereign wealth fund would enable government “to provide a steady resource for national development objectives”.

However, the country’s stagnant economy, which slipped into recession this year after the gross domestic product (GDP) declined 0.7% in the second quarter, might put brakes on the ruling party’s ambitious plan.

Key economic indicators, including investor confidence, has also been declining. Last month, government announced a R50-billion economic stimulus in a bid to boost recovery and stimulate job creation.

Only six African countries, namely Angola, Nigeria, Libya, Rwanda, Botswana and Morocco, are part of the International Forum of Sovereign Wealth Funds.

Mantashe urged bosses of the mining industry to refrain from talking down the sector, adding that he was still confident the industry was a critical player in boosting the economy. — Fin24

PW Botha wagged his finger and banned us in 1988 but we stood firm. We built a reputation for fearless journalism, then, and now. Through these last 35 years, the Mail & Guardian has always been on the right side of history.

These days, we are on the trail of the merry band of corporates and politicians robbing South Africa of its own potential.

To help us ensure another 35 future years of fiercely independent journalism, please subscribe.


South Africa has been junked

Treasury says the credit ratings downgrade “could not have come at a worse time”, as country enters a 21-day Covid-19 lockdown with little money saved up

Mail & Guardian needs your help

Our job is to help give you the information we all need to participate in building this country, while holding those in power to account. But now the power to help us keep doing that is in your hands

Press Releases

The online value of executive education in a Covid-19 world

Executive education courses further develop the skills of leaders in the workplace

Sisa Ntshona urges everyone to stay home, and consider travelling later

Sisa Ntshona has urged everyone to limit their movements in line with government’s request

SAB Zenzele’s special AGM postponed until further notice

An arrangement has been announced for shareholders and retailers to receive a 77.5% cash payout

20th Edition of the National Teaching Awards

Teachers are seldom recognised but they are indispensable to the country's education system

Awards affirm the vital work that teachers do

Government is committed to empowering South Africa’s teachers with skills, knowledge and techniques for a changing world

SAB Zenzele special AGM rescheduled to March 25 2020

New voting arrangements are being made to safeguard the health of shareholders

Dimension Data launches Saturday School in PE

The Gauteng Saturday School has produced a number of success stories