AssociationsRisk Management

SA’s failed state danger – new developments tone down concerns says SA risk body

Positive developments on national economic investment and technology have given South Africa major impetus in terms of improving its global risk profile, says the Institute for Risk Management South Africa (IRMSA). The challenge now says the organization is to make sure commitments are followed through timeously.

IRMSA says President Cyril Ramaphosa’s opening address at the recent SA Investment Conference was hopeful, focusing on the country’s entry into a new phase in which the economy should begin to recover. The conference detailed opportunities in South Africa’s emerging market economy with a focus on infrastructure development in sectors such as transportation, renewable energy, and tourism.

Promising news also emerged from ICASA’s International Mobile Telecommunications (IMT) radio frequency spectrum auction. The successful completion of the auction saw just over R14.4 billion in revenue to go toward the national budget.

Considering IRMSA’s 2022 Risk Report, which detailed the possibilities and consequences of South Africa becoming a failed state, these developments show a promising push toward positive change.

The report, released at the beginning of 2022 predicted that “if SA continues to experience a continued breakdown of ethical and legal principles, unmanageable societal unrest and breakdown of the rule of law, complete economic collapse becomes almost inevitable”.

IRMSA’s Chief Risk Advisor Christopher Palm believes that these twin successes mean we might be on the right track: “The momentum created from these events is hopefully just the beginning of South Africa’s path to economic and social recovery. Investments in these areas signify the beginning of a new phase in South Africa’s economic growth. It is a welcome shift from the troubling downward spiral of events that could have resulted in a failed state. Although we have a long way to go, I think there’s reason to be cautiously optimistic.”

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