South Africa Should Attract Long-Term Investment, Gordhan Says

April 22 (Bloomberg) -- South Africa should attract long-term investment into the country and the continent and build on its reputation as the launching pad for investment in Africa, Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan said.

“There is a profound structural shift in the global economy in which the emerging markets will play a key role,” he said in an opinion piece published in Sunday Times today. “Africa and South Africa can, and must, ride this new wave of growth.”

The continent will prove to offer higher returns for investors seeking new opportunities, he said. Real rates of returns averaged about 22 percent from 2005 to 2008, the same range as China’s, Pravin said, citing the World Bank.

Growth, investment and development are critical to help South Africa transform aspirations on the ground, he said. The country must continue to improve the quality of its social spending, which has increased from 49 percent of government expenditure 10 years ago to 58 percent, he said.

“The challenge now is not so much the increase in the rand value of social expenditure, but the increase in the quality of public services, especially education and health,” he said. “More importantly, our task is to shift people out of the welfare net and into jobs.”

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