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Investment and Development Finance (330)

South Africa hosts the 6th South Africa (SA)- European Union (EU) Summit on 18 July 2013, symbolically, on former President Nelson Mandela's 95th birthday. At the end of the apartheid period, the Mandela administration began to negotiate the terms of the Trade, Development and Cooperation Agreement (TDCA), and signed with the EU in 1999. This freed up trade between SA and the EU region with a planned phase-in over 12 years.
In 2012, Africa lost an estimated $43-$46 billion to illicit financial flows (IFF). Calculated over time, the size of this “shadow financial system” is staggering. For instance, between 1980 and 2009 the continent is estimated to have lost around US$1.3 trillion. This is according to a report by Global Financial Integrity (GFI) and the African Development Bank (AfDB) released in May 2013.
On 9 May 2013, the President of the African Development Bank (AfDB), Dr Donald Kaberuka, addressed an engaging crowd on the potential for emerging powers to be part of the infrastructure solution in Africa whilst highlighting the need for Africa to be resilient when engaging in the global economy.
SAIIA Occasional Paper No 145, April 2013
SAIIA Occasional Paper No 143, April 2013
SAIIA Policy Briefing 63, March 2013
On 16 March 2013 SAIIA brought together outstanding South African high school learners to host their own model BRICS Summit to discuss the creation of the BRICS Development Bank. Each school represented one of the five BRICS countries in a special negotiation session that resulted in the creation of a BRICS Youth Communiqué.
President Jacob Zuma addressed a somewhat distracted South African population in his State of the Nation speech.  He started and finished the lengthy presentation by reaffirming the commitment of government to the vision set out in the National Development Plan. Unsurprisingly, this was one of a number of echoes of policy decisions made at the ANC's National Conference held in Mangaung in December 2012. Among them were the categorical dismissal of the nationalisation debate and a strong defence of the supremacy of the constitution. These are things investors want to hear and the reaction of the rand reflected a certain…
Mangaung is consumed by the leadership succession debate. But while some aspects of the policy proposals going to Mangaung have been debated very publicly, others, such as international relations, have not. After all, jobs and the economy, not foreign policy, tend to be the deciding factor in most elections. Yet how a country tackles its global relations has a direct impact on these very real domestic issues.
In August, economist Chris Hart made headlines by classifying South Africa’s unemployment levels as “exceptional”. As reported in this paper, he compared the unemployment situation here to the employment success story of Brazil, and counseled that taxation policies, not labour laws, were to blame for our persistent unemployment problem.
South Africa's oft-repeated role as a “gateway” to African markets was given renewed impetus by President Jacob Zuma during last year's summit of Brics countries—Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa—in China. But so far, the gateway role of South Africa has not been analysed systematically.
John Maynard Keynes’s ghost casts a shadow over the current financial crisis. His prescriptions for the Great Depression consisted essentially of sustained fiscal stimulus and protection from imports in order to retain that stimulus within the domestic market. They were badly suited to the economic crisis of the 1970s, which was characterised by inflation and stagnation with the former aggravated by Keynesian demand stimulus.
When you walk the streets of Addis Ababa in Ethiopia, it feels like the city is one large building site. Anyone with some money to invest is clearly putting it into property in this growing urban centre. Construction can be a good sign in a developing country. Not only does it provide employment in the short term but infrastructure development supports the growth of other economic sectors in the long-run. While some may argue that property is a safe bet in an uncertain economy, the boom in construction in Ethiopia is mainly driven by infrastructure development objectives.
The European Union (EU) is South Africa’s main trading partner, its principal investor and largest development partner. In 2007 South Africa became one of only ten countries globally - and the only African country - to have formed a Strategic Partnership (SP) with the EU, of which the fifth Summit is due to take place on 18-19 September 2012 in Brussels.
The South African Institute of International Affairs, Western Cape Branch, invites you to a book launch to be addressed by author Dr Lyal White:  "Going Global - Insights from South Africa´s top companies".Venue:The Mountain Club of SA, 97 Hatfield Street, Gardens, Cape Town
Rapid economic growth in South Africa must be accompanied by policies to boost job creation and training opportunities, particularly among youths, according to a report launched today.
Wednesday, 25 July 2012

SADC Business Case Studies

A new set of case studies, looking at the barriers to doing businesss faced by firms in the Southern African Development Community (SADC) region, has just been released.
South African Institute of International Affairs, Western Cape Branch, invites you to a public seminar to be addressed by Michael Power speaking on "The Great Migration of Capital".Venue: The Mountain Club of SA, 97 Hatfield Street, Gardens, Cape Town
The South African Institute of International Affairs, Eastern Cape Branch, invites you to a public seminar to be addressed by Dr. Martin Zimmermann, President and CEO Mercedes-Benz South Africa, on "Smarter is better than Bigger: Economic Growth VS Sustainable Development."
News headlines were last week screaming about the US$2 billion pledge that South Africa made to the IMF. Ranging from descriptions of the pledge as a gift or donation to statements that South Africa was bailing out the EU, most of the headlines and the stories fell short on the facts and didn't show much understanding of the economics behind the pledge.
South Africa's currency debate focuses on whether to emulate China and other predominantly East Asian countries by pegging the Rand. Import competing manufacturing companies and associated trade unions plus industrial policy advocates in government advocate pegging the currency at 'competitive' levels. Many macroeconomists in the banking sector, Treasury, and South African Reserve Bank are wary of inflationary consequences.
Thursday, 07 June 2012

G-20: The Road to Los Cabos

The South African Institute of International Affairs, in collaboration with The International Development Law Unit in the Centre for Human Rights at the University of Pretoria, invites you to a G20 Study Group Discussion on G20: The Road to Los Cabos.
In the run-up to the BRICS Summit at the end of March 2012, the South African Institute of International Affairs and the International Development Law Unit at the University of Pretoria jointly hosted a study group on South Africa's approach to BRICS in support of the core economic priorities of the Government of South Africa. This was also an opportunity to analyse the value-add of BRICS membership to South Africa's economic priorities and to review the progress made so far since South Africa's admission to the group.
The on-going economic crisis facing the Eurozone does not only have potential ramifications for the single currency and the future trajectory of the European Union itself, but also for the rest of the world. Recent decisions by the eurozone members have increased international confidence in the ability of the Union to weather the storm.
Making Key Business Constraints in SADC Tangible: Experiences of the Private Sector Harare, Zimbabwe
The selection of Dr. Jim Yong Kim as the next World Bank president offers two lessons on international economic governance diplomacy to South Africa and Africans and a warning to the Bank.
On March 29th BRICS Heads of State will gather in Delhi. Forging a common trade and investment platform is a challenging proposition. It is easier for the leaders to focus on what unites them in international economic negotiations, rather than what divides them in bilateral relations. However, some attention will have to be paid to those differences if their cooperation on the international stage is to be fruitful.