500 Days of Economic Policy Action:
A Short-Term Policy Action Agenda for South Africa

CBPEP Colloquium
2-4 June 2021

registerpanel summaries


Economic Growth in South Africa since 1994 has on average rarely exceeded 2.5%.  Moreover, this sustained period of mediocre growth has in recent years been severely undermined by the steady demise of governance through a process commonly known as ‘state capture’.  In addition, the economy now faces the more immediate shock of the Covid-19 pandemic, just as the process of rolling back institutionalised corruption and formalising innovative economic growth plans has begun.  

What then, can be done in South Africa over the next 500 days?  If we were as a society to craft an integrated, short-term and practical set of growth, employment and development priorities, what would this look like?  Developing such a 500-day plan arguably goes to the heart of our long-run future as a country.

An action-focused colloquium

500 Days of Economic Policy Action:
A Short-Term Policy Action Agenda for South Africa

From 2-4 June 2021, we are convening an online colloquium aimed at outlining a targeted agenda for promoting economic growth and employment in SA. Building on the productive discussions that took place at the 2020 CBPEP Colloquium on Employment Growth in South Africa, we will bring together South Africa’s leading economic policy thinkers, senior government officials and social partners to provide action-oriented advice on a range of issues.

The programme will also provide opportunities to explore private sector views on national priorities and for targeted discussions on key economic sectors, including mining and energy, telecommunications and digitisation, water and transport. 
Topics include:
The fiscal environment - consolidation, tax collection and spending efficiency
Infrastructure and the SOEs - opportunities for growth and employment in telecommunications, digital, energy, water and sanitation sectors
Private sector views on national priorities -
including banking, manufacturing, mining and the retail sectors
Innovation and structural reforms -the role and impact of Operation Vulindlela
Local economic and employment development - municipal debt and building state capacity

Objectives and impact

The aim of this colloquium is to outline a range of short-term, actionable policy interventions that, together, could place South Africa on a new growth trajectory to fuel economic recovery and create more jobs over the next 18 months.

Participants’ input will feed into key advisory fora – including the President’s Economic Advisory Council – and provide valuable insights to help inform the National Treasury’s Mid-Term Expenditure Framework, as well as the wider policy agendas of both government and the social partners.

view the agenda