President Cyril Ramaphosa has assured world leaders at the United Nations General Assembly that South Africa is hard at work to revive its economy.
“Even as our country is going through difficult economic challenges we have made progress.
“We are reforming our economy and creating an environment that is conducive to investment, and have embarked on an investment drive to attract $100 billion dollars in the next five years,” said the President.
President Ramaphosa gave his maiden address at the United Nations General Assembly as President of the Republic of South Africa on Tuesday.
The President used the platform to allay concerns on the country’s land reform programme.
“We have started a comprehensive dialogue on the question of land reform, which is guided by our Constitution and the rule of law, as we seek ways to ensure that the land is shared among all who work it, as set out in our Freedom Charter,” said the President.
Silencing the guns
In line with the African Union’s aspirations of “silencing the guns by 2020”, President Ramaphosa rallied world leaders to support the African continent in its bid to end conflict.
“There is urgency to the measures we must take to end conflict and war.
“We must accept our shared responsibility and our shared interest in ending conflict and, using the outcomes of the Nelson Mandela Peace Summit, to empower the United Nations to be a more effective instrument for mediation, peace keeping and post-conflict reconstruction,” said the President.
Reform of the UN Security Council
President Ramaphosa reiterated calls for reform of the United Nations, particularly its Security Council.
He also called on leaders to desist from unilateralism but rather open up international trade.
“We must resist any and all efforts to undermine the multilateral approach to international trade, which is essential to the promotion of stability and predictability in the global economy,” said the President.
“Our task as global leaders is to pursue the policies that are required to turn intent into implementation and mobilise the resources needed to turn implementation into impact.
“As Africans, we have made significant strides in addressing the challenges that have confronted our continent over many decades,” said the President.
Boosting the economy and intra-African trade
Speaking on the establishment of the African Continental Free Trade Area, President Ramaphosa told the assembly that the ACFTA will fundamentally transform African economies.
He said it will give rise to a new industrial age on the continent.
“With effective investment in education, improved health care, good governance and greater economic integration, Africa has the potential to develop its productive capacity on a scale and at a rate that will lift tens of millions out of poverty,” said President.