Cape Times

Ramaphosa steps in to quell spats over privatisat­ion of Sarb


PRESIDENT Cyril Ramaphosa has moved in to quell the public spats by government and ANC officials over the mandate and ownership of the SA Reserve Bank (Sarb), saying that the government’s policy on the independen­ce and role of the central bank has not changed.

This comes as Ace Magashule, secretary-general of the ANC, said on Tuesday that the ruling party’s national executive committee lekgotla had directed the government to consider constituti­ng a task team to explore quantity easing measures to address intergover­nmental debts to make funds available for developmen­tal purposes.

In a statement as ANC president, Ramaphosa reiterated Reserve Bank governor Lesetja Kganyago’s sentiments that the Constituti­on outlines the mandate of the Sarb of protecting the value of the currency in the interest of balanced and sustainabl­e growth.

“This policy has not changed,” Ramaphosa said. “It is our desire for the South African Reserve Bank to be publicly owned. However, we recognise that this will come at a cost, which, given our current economic and fiscal situation, is simply not prudent.”

Ramaphosa also said the government should use other policy instrument­s at its disposal to grow the economy rather than focusing on using the Reserve Bank to do this. “In the context of the above, the officials viewed the recent public spats about the mandate of the SA Reserve Bank as not being helpful,” he said.

“There is a broad agreement that all viable, legal and other policy instrument­s at our disposals should be used to ensure that we get the economy growing again and create jobs, by implementi­ng programmes of our manifesto, in order to achieve our desired national objectives.”

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