Mr N J J van R Koornhof (Cope) to ask the Minister of Trade and Industry:
(1) Whether his department (a) have any measures in place or (b) are in the process of implementing any new measures to encourage foreign capital investment; if not, why not, in each case; if so, what are the relevant details, in each case;
The dti in its bilateral engagements with key countries has placed on the agenda the issue of foreign capital investment as a key priority. For example during the state visit of President J. G. Zuma, the IDC signed MOUs with the China Construction Bank and the China Africa Development Fund for long term loans and project finance. This was also done during the State Visits of France, UK, Russia and India during our bi laterals and the Business Forums. Work is currently in progress between the Department of Economic Development, the DTI and the Industrial Development Corporation to raise concessional finance and longer term loans. During the BRICS Summit, the finance departments of Member States have established a working group to look at cooperation of financing measures between BRICS countries, amongst others this includes trading with Member States currency. For South Africa, this work is lead by our National Treasury.
(2) whether his department has been informed of the Ease of Doing Business index published by the World Bank, which saw South Africa slide from 28th place in 2006 to 34th in 2010; if not, what is the position in this regard; if so, what (a) are the main reason(s) for this slide, (b) steps does his department intend taking in this regard and (c) are the further relevant details? NW2532E
The dti through its divisions Economic Research and Policy Coordination (ERPC) and Trade and Investment South Africa (TISA) participate in the annual investment climate surveys with the World Bank and other rating agencies. On the 29th July 2010, I participated in the launch of the 2010/2011 report that was released jointly by the dti and the World Bank Country Director for South Africa Ruth Kagia, at a “Development Dialogue” which took place at the Kopanong Conference Centre in Benoni. Issues such as red tape and administrative barriers were elevated to ICTS cluster and task teams to fast track impediments and improve the overall investment climate and cost of doing business in South Africa. Review of policy measures as well as pronouncement on same play a key role in this regard and we are compelled to consider sound communication channels on investment climate as well as support measures. In addition the dti has partnered with the Oxford Business Group to address and effectively communicate investment measures that have been considered. During the compilation process of the OBG publication the dti is envisaging intense engagements that will result in clear articulation of measures implemented by government in addressing impediments to investments as well as ease of doing business.