Zumanomics Revisited - The Road from Mangaung to 2030

Pertunia Thulo -- Thu, 07/18/2013 - 00:00

Zumanomics Revisited - The Road from Mangaung to 2030

Zumanomics Revisited is a sequel to the successful 2009 publication, Zumanomics – Which Way to Shared Prosperity in South Africa? This was a well-received and influential exposition of what might be President Jacob Zuma’s national agenda after the 2009 election. The economic and political landscape has now changed significantly. Many of the issues then raised have since visibly and urgently again entered into the national debate, as South Africa continues to seek an economy that is bigger, stronger and better.

In the light of global and domestic developments since 2009, Raymond Parsons at the NWU Potchefstroom Business School, now reassesses the economic prospects for SA post-Mangaung and following the 2014 general election.  While the 2009 publication was a collective effort with other contributors, this is an individual one.  Many red lights are flashing for the economy and SA is struggling to avoid a ‘low-growth trap’.  What are the conditions for the success of the National Development Plan’s vision for 2030 and can it be translated into reality?  What will happen after the 2014 election? 

Drawing on his considerable experience and analysis of SA’s political economy, Professor Parsons redefines and updates Zumanomics in the light of these developments.  Will South Africa be able to move successfully to address the triple challenges of unemployment, poverty and inequality identified by President Zuma as the three greatest issues needing South Africa’s attention?  How can the country improve its global competitiveness? How can SA best build on its strengths and address its weaknesses?

Prof Parsons says that much has happened in SA since 2009 to require a fresh look at where the country now stands and what is the way ahead economically and politically."We are now in a new phase between the ANC's elective conference in December 2012 and the elections next year". He believes there are still tough decisions ahead if SA wants to do better after the 2014 elections. "The country has reached a fork in the road to the goal of 'shared prosperity', given its current weak economic performance and social tensions', he says.

Prof Parsons also emphasized that the latest 'Zumanomics' is not just a sequel to the previous book, "but is an extended attempt by myself to assess anew how SA can more successfully tackle its socio-economic challenges especially through the National Development Plan. “This plan has the potential to make a big difference to SA's future, but it will require the vision it offers for 2030 to be shared by as many South Africans as possible if the plan is to succeed”.

On 20 August, this book will be launched during a cheese-and-wine book launch event at the North-West University in Potchefstroom.


Raymond Parsons is a prominent South African economist and a professor at the Potchefstroom Business School in the Faculty of Economic and Management Sciences at the North-West University. Until recently, he was the Deputy CEO of BUSA. Until 2010, Professor Parsons was the Overall Business Convenor at the National Economic Development and Labour Council (NEDLAC), the major social dialogue institution in South Africa. He is a key contributor to public and academic debate on a broad spectrum of issues of critical importance to the political economy of South Africa. He studied economics at the universities of Cape Town, Oxford and Copenhagen, before playing a leading role in organised business in South Africa for many years. He is a former director-general of the South African Chamber of Business (SACOB). From 2000 to 2003, he was a visiting professor at the School of Economic and Business Sciences at the University of the Witwatersrand. He also holds an Honorary Doctorate from the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University (NMMU). Professor Parsons is a past president of the Economic Society of South Africa (ESSA). In 2004, former President Thabo Mbeki appointed Professor Parsons to the Board of Directors of the South African Reserve Bank and he was reappointed in 2008. He was also a director of the SA Mint. He is the author/editor of four books – The Mbeki Inheritance: SA’s Economy 1990-2004; Parsons’ Perspective – Focus on the Economy; Manuel, Markets and Money: Essays in Appraisal; and Zumanomics – Which Way to Shared Prosperity in South Africa?



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