2000

UNITED DEMOCRATIC MOVEMENT

MEDIA RELEASE


SOUTH AFRICA’S RATINGS UPGRADED BY STANDARD AND POOR

MEDIA STATEMENT ISSUED BY GERHARD KOORNHOF,
UDM SPOKESPERSON ON FINANCE

The UDM is excited about the announcement that Standard and Poor has upgraded South Africa’s foreign currency ratings to “BBB minus” and our local currency ratings to “A minus”.

This is a credit to our basically sound economic policy framework and an acknowledgement that structural reform in our economy is being stepped up.

The UDM’s criticism regarding the following issues is confirmed by Standard and Poor’s statement that these issues, amongst others, constrain our ratings:

  1. We need urgent steps and initiatives to address the chronic unemployment problem.
  1. We need an acceleration in our economic growth rate above the expected levels.
  1. We need a fast tracking of privatisation programmes to reduce the public debt burden.
  1. We need to address the labour market rigidities.

The UDM believes that once the government shows the political will to seek solutions to address these problems, we would have made full use of the window of opportunity for the South African economy, currently open to us. We trust that the government’s support for these structural reforms will gain momentum, as was highlighted by Standard and Poor. If this is not done, due to internal political pressures within the ANC/COSATU/SACP alliance, our ratings will decline.

Enquiries:
Dr Gerhard Koornhof, MP
UDM Spokesperson for Finance

Pretoria
28 February