Isaah Mhlanga on permanent spending habits: what to listen for while politicians campaign

30 April 2021
JEL Code: H12, H20, H53, H60, H68, H72, Q02

It is not often that a country has an opportunity to allocate windfall government funds. Between the external pressure to stabilize our debt burden after the unexpected pandemic and the internal pressure from disaffected South Africans depending on the Covid19 social grant, which is about to expire, what should policy makers prioritise? Bearing in mind that municipal elections are 6 months away, what should we listen for while our politicians campaign? In this podcast, we are joined by Isaah Mhlanga, a Chief Economist at Alexander Forbes, and we explore the pros and cons of investing South Africa’s temporary R38 billion tax windfall in additional social grants or in reducing our debt burden. We consider whether social grants can reduce inequality and how these funds can be used to encourage a long-term sustainable growth path. While Isaah’s advice appeals to policy makers, there are certainly gems of wisdom for any South African wanting to manage their finances sensibly during these unpredictable times. We hope you enjoy!

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The beat used in this production, called ‘Resolutions’, is royalty free and can be found at freebeats.io.