Agri SA hopes MTBPS will help address structural, SOE challenges

10th November 2021 By: Schalk Burger - Creamer Media Senior Contributing Editor

Agricultural industry organisation Agri SA says the Medium Term Budget Policy Statement (MTBPS) to be delivered by Finance Minister Enoch Godongwana on November 11 should address structural challenges, including sentiments around State-owned enterprises (SOEs) and if there are any unbudgeted bailouts, as well as the National Treasury’s resolve to restrain spending.

“Agri SA believes these, among others, will either set us on a trajectory of turning the tide or we will see more of the same from the new incumbent and his team,” said Agri SA agricultural economist Kulani Siweya.

While there may be positives in the short term, including the rate of fiscal deterioration being abated markedly, brought on by the commodity price windfall boosting revenue and the positive impact on the fiscal ratios of higher nominal gross domestic product following Statistics South Africa's benchmarking or rebasing exercise, Agri SA is still cautious on the long-term view, particularly when considering that many structural challenges remain, he said.

Agri SA further noted that it also expected the MTBPS to help address South Africa's "precarious" debt outlook.

“This medium-term statement should inspire confidence once again from various spheres. This is sorely needed at a time when investment in infrastructure has been on the decline and inclusive growth is now an imperative that is non-negotiable,” Siweya said.