African National Congress Parliamentary Caucus welcomes 2019 Medium Term Budget Policy Statement (MTBPS)

30 October 2019

The African National Congress (ANC) Parliamentary Caucus welcomes the 2019 Medium Term Budget Policy Statement (MTBPS), delivered by the Minister of Finance comrade Tito Mboweni in the National Assembly today.

The 2019 MTBPS focused on three aspects namely, restructuring of State Owned Enterprises (SOE’s), stabilising public finances and promoting investment and economic growth. The restructuring of State Owned Enterprises reinforces governments commitment to bring about an end to government bailouts to our nations SOE’s. SOE’s like Eskom, are crucial in a developmental state that South Africa is, and are imperative in bringing about this inclusive growth in our society. Although delivered during difficult economic times, we emerge from this 2019 MTBPS optimistic about the future our sovereign nation, with the Minister of Finance revealing that there’s been improvement in investor confidence, which has resulted sunset industries such as the mining sector having a reported growth of 14.4% during the second quarter.

However, with that said, the ANC in Parliament concurs with Minister of Finances utterances, that state-owned enterprises should be profitable as, SOE’s are business’s and should be run as such. In light of this, we are confident that proposed reforms by the government at our nations SOE’s will improve the financial standing of our state-owned enterprises. The Medium-Term Budget Policy Statement is an opportunity to restore trust between government and society, it is with this in mind that the ANC-led government is working tirelessly to restore ailing SOE’s, in so doing encouraging inclusive growth.

Stabilising public finances is an apex priority for the ANC in Parliament during the 6th parliament. In line with reforms to alleviate the burden on the national fiscal, we are pleased that the minister of finance has adopted cost cutting measures which will lead to expenditure reductions totalling R 21 billion in the financial year 2020/21; and a further R29 billion in the financial year 2021/22. These reductions will ensure that the ANC-led government reduces South Africa’s debt-to-Gross Domestic Product (GDP) ration over the next three years. We as the ANC in Parliament await the President’s guidelines on cost saving measures, which will result in the salaries of MEC’s being frozen and the travel allowance being capped for members of the executive, among other reforms.

The public service wage bill remains a major concern. That the average wage increase across government was or 2.2 per cent above; and that wage bill accounts for 46 per cent of tax revenue in 2019/20 alone, is very worrisome. Such figures are unsustainable for a developmental state such as ours, as they bear a heavy burden on the ordinary tax-payer.

Furthermore, that the national debt exceeded R3 trillion this year alone. It is expected to rise to R4.5 trillion in the next three years, is a matter the requires urgent attention from all sate holders. and guided solution. A resolute strategy must be employed to halt this downward spiral, as it undermines governments to implement the National Democratic Plan 2030.

Despite this outlook, government expenditure over the Medium Term Expenditure Framework 2019/21, will total R3 trillion on education, social development and health, this encouraging and is evidence that not all is lost despite the challenges currently faced by our economy. This expenditure is in line with the National Development Plan NDP (2030), which seeks to address the triple challenges of poverty, unemployment and inequality, by granting access to free quality education to millions of our people and through the implementation of the National Health Insurance (NHI).



Andile Mdleleni
082 694 1232