Opposition parties concerned Treasury dipping into SARB’s reserves

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Political parties in Parliament have expressed mixed reactions to Finance Minister Enoch Godongwana’s Budget Speech.

Democratic Alliance (DA) Spokesperson on Finance Dion George raised concern about the announcement by the Minister to dip into the Contingency Reserves of the South African Reserve Bank.

“As expected, the Minister is now going to raid the Reserve Banks’ Contingency Reserves that is required for risk, it’s going to raid that to cover some government debt but it’s not going to be enough. Government is already paying R1 billion interest on its debt, so taking this R150 billion from the Contingency Reserve, at least it’s going to be more. We can see it’s the start of a complete raid. That’s not going to make a difference whatsoever to the lives of South Africans battling the cost of the living crisis.”

The African Christian Democratic Party (ACDP)’s Steve Swart has also raised concern over what he says the plundering of the reserve funds of the Reserve Bank.

“What we are seeing now we are concerned; we are seeing government debt levels increase. And not only that, having run down Eskom and causing logistics crisis and causing a power crisis which has impacted economic growth, we now see the plundering of our reserve funds at the Reserve Bank. And that is of greater concern,”

Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) Whip Veronica Mente has expressed disappointment in Godongwana’s allocation to municipalities and the financial aid scheme NSFAS.

“As expected we have heard things, we knew that there is no capacity to deliver on them. To cut off NSFAS massive like that it an insult to young people of this country to not have a plan on how we are going to grow. The economy of this country do not plan on how municipalities are going to be enhanced and strengthening in terms of more budget. Less budget was given to municipalities that are at the coalface of service delivery on a daily basis, they must make sure that we live in hygienic areas.”

Business Unity South Africa Deputy CEO, Khulekani Mathe says it welcomes Minister Godongwana’s interventions to stabilize the economy.

“We welcome the budget. We think that it was a delicate balance that the National Treasury and the minister tried to strike and under the circumstances, we think that it is a budget that we can welcome. But we also note that it is reflective of the difficult times we are in as an economy,”

Video: 2024 Budget Speech