Mineral Resources Minister Gwede Montashe says he will meet with Rob Hersaw and urge him to contribute to finding answers to the challenges facing the country.

A businessman hit the news for calling the government’s leadership “useless”.

Montashe was speaking at a media briefing on Thursday to give a progress report on the economic, investment, employment and infrastructure development sector cluster in Pretoria.

The economic recovery document is now 2 years old, and the government is confident that the program is making strides towards economic recovery, job creation and growth.

Ministers of the Cluster of Economic Reconstruction and Recovery issued a report on the progress of the plan, which aims to help unlock investments and resuscitate the country’s ailing economy.

Human Settlements Minister Mmamoloko Kubai says: “South Africa’s economy can grow by more than 2.5% and the economic recovery efforts are aimed at pushing it beyond that level so that we can see South Africans able to work, businesses thriving and sectors are growing. Phase 1 of the ERRP was to serve families in need and a solid grassroots health response was achieved.”

The country is experiencing an unprecedented level of unemployment. The Minister of Human Settlements also details some measures to support economic growth and job creation.

“In terms of the government employment program, that’s one area where we’ve been able to see very good results in the country, helping and attracting more young people to the region. Most of the people employed by this program are young men and women at a time when we had restrictions, quarantines, and most people found themselves without any economic activity. If you look at teacher aid, most have been able to benefit, and in agriculture, most have been able to find amortization through the government employment program.”

Electricity supply

The country continues to struggle with power supply constraints, resulting in blackouts that negatively affect economic activity. Montashe says a lot of work is being done on the energy front.

“The plan announced by the president is the most effective because it focuses on the right issue. Maintenance and servicing of units that are already in the system but not giving us power. Baseload energy is a bigger crisis in the overall energy crisis and we need to work on it.”

Montashe also calls on those who criticize the work of the government to promote the success of economic reforms in the country.

“If he is not given a stake in ACSA, it is just as useless as the minister, so be it. Because we can’t give him ACSA. We have to get business to work with us, not against us, because if we work with business, we’ll succeed, if we don’t, we’ll both fail.”

The minister has agreed to meet with controversial businessman Rob Gersov on the issues he is concerned about when he returns to South Africa.

According to media reports, the businessman wants to buy six regional airports owned by the government, but to no avail.

The cluster says that as work continues, it calls on social partners to strengthen their partnership and coordinate their efforts to ensure a smooth economic recovery.

Ministers also look to the Energy Crisis Committee and the Justice, Crime Prevention and Security Cluster to provide security strategies to tackle corruption, theft and infrastructure vandalism.

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