Finance Minister Tito Mboweni faces the tough task of balancing government's books when he delivers his medium-term budget policy statement.
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CAPE TOWN - All eyes will be on Finance Minister Tito Mboweni as he delivers his medium-term budget policy statement.
Mboweni has to tick many boxes in his mini-budget: Credible fiscal and debt numbers, plans to boost economic growth and policy steps that increase investor and business confidence.
Mboweni will present a much lower economic-growth forecast than in February. Since the start of the year, the International Monetary Fund, the Reserve Bank and the World Bank have all cut their projections for 2019 as rolling blackouts and poor investor sentiment due to policy uncertainty weigh on output.
The budget deficit will probably widen to the biggest since the financial crisis as provisions for Eskom, the public broadcaster and national airline sap resources and revenue misses projections.
Economists in a Bloomberg survey forecast a gap of 6.1 percent of gross domestic product for this year compared with the Treasury’s estimate of 4.5 percent given in February.
Of the 17 economists in the survey, nine forecast that the ratings company South Africans eagerly await the much anticipated medium-term budget. on the credit assessment to negative before the end of the year.