South Africa’s government, labor unions and business representatives have agreed to create working groups that will seek agreement on a plan to revive the country’s ailing economy.
Representatives of the National Economic Development and Labor Council decided on Thursday night to split into smaller groups to work on elements of the so-called social contract, a deal that President Cyril Ramaphosa said in February he expected to approve within 100 days. He missed that deadline.
“There is no specific time frame, but we want the process to be completed before the president’s state of the country address” in February, Matthew Parkes, parliamentary coordinator at the Congress of South African Trade Unions, said in an interview.
Last February, Ramaphosa said that by bringing together government, business, labor and civil society, he hoped to chart a way forward for an economy that has been languishing for more than a decade. The unemployment rate is near a record high, the national debt is growing, and a series of corruption scandals have undermined faith in the government.
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