South Africa 'to spend its way out of recession'

South African President Cyril Ramaphosa has ambitious plans to rescue his country from the economic doldrums as it heads towards elections next year.

The president said his stimulus package was aimed at getting South Africa out of recession.

A 400bn rand ($28.1 bn) infrastructure fund has been set up as "over the years South Africa's infrastructure has been tapering down",
he said in the capital, Pretoria, where he unveiled the Economic Stimulus and Recovery Plan.

Boosting tourism was also a key objective and there would be an "immediate change to the visa regime" - to remove obstacles and make it easier for highly skilled foreigners to enter the country.

The country's mining charter would be reviewed to "provide certainty to investors", he said.

Agriculture would also get a boost to help revive the drought-stricken sector with an injection of $3.5bn.

Plans to help the telecommunications sector lower data costs were also revealed to "increase overall competitiveness in South Africa's economy".

The 65-year-old, who became president earlier this year, added: "We are certain that these interventions will help in putting the economy on a far firmer footing. We have within us to form a new path of growth and new path of trajectory. This will have a decisive role in reversing the current technical recession."

The rand has strengthened against the dollar and other major currencies following the announcement.


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