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Plastics industry disappointed with 2024 Budget speech, calls for urgent economic stimulus

23rd February 2024

     

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This article has been supplied as a media statement and is not written by Creamer Media. It may be available only for a limited time on this website.

Plastics SA Executive Director Anton Hanekom has voiced his disappointment in the Budget Speech delivered by Finance Minister Enoch Godongwana on 21 February 2024. Hanekom emphasised that the budget reveals the country's deepening crisis and calls for urgent measures to plan for the future.

"The budget presented by Finance Minister Godongwana is disappointing, and it highlights the urgent need for comprehensive planning to address the challenges facing our nation," said Hanekom. "With our economy stagnating and a mere 0.6% growth rate projected, it's evident that we need more robust strategies to navigate out of this crisis."

Hanekom stressed the importance of prioritising and incentivising local production to stimulate economic growth. "Encouraging localisation is crucial for revitalising our economy. We need innovation across all sectors, particularly within the plastics industry, to spur growth and create sustainable employment opportunities," he remarked.

The executive director also highlighted persistent issues such as load shedding and logistical challenges, which continue to hinder economic progress. "Load shedding and logistics remain significant obstacles that demand immediate attention and innovative solutions," Hanekom noted.

Addressing the high cost of living, Hanekom expressed concern for both ordinary South Africans and businesses struggling to survive. "The budget missed an opportunity to alleviate the burdensome cost of living, which is adversely affecting households and enterprises alike," he stated.

In addition, Hanekom underscored the alarming increase in government debt levels and the depletion of state reserve funds. "We are spending a disproportionate amount servicing our country's debt instead of investing in domestic industries. This unsustainable trend underscores the urgent need for an economic growth stimulus," he emphasised.

In conclusion, the plastics industry is calling for decisive action from the government to steer the country toward economic recovery and prosperity. "We urge the government to prioritise investments in our nation's future, foster local innovation, and implement measures to alleviate the financial strain on households and businesses. The time for action is now," he concluded

Edited by Creamer Media Reporter

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