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Published: 19 Jul 2012
|SA: Statement by the Federation of Unions of South Africa, elated over rate cuts (19/07/2012)|
The Federation of Unions of South Africa (FEDUSA) is elated about the interest rate cut announced by the South African Reserve Bank minutes ago. This decision is testament to the fact that the Monetary Policy Committee is at last recognising the need to cut interest rates in order to stimulate consumer spending, economic growth and job creation.
“Our members will be very happy”, said FEDUSA General Secretary Dennis George. “We are glad that the Monetary Policy Committee has realised the importance of consumer spending to grow our economy and create more jobs.”
FEDUSA has been calling for an interest rate cut for the last seven quarters, arguing that food and energy inflation is making their members suffer. The Federation earlier argued that “workers are extremely vulnerable to price increases set by the monopolies so characteristic of our economy”. The Federation then used the analogy of workers being the “unwilling pawns in a game of chess played by big business” calling on the Reserve Bank to “do more as referee”.
“Although we would argue the repo rate cut should maybe have been a bit more generous, we feel that it would give much needed relief to many households and SMEs (small and medium enterprises). Let’s hope that this will lead to a spurt of economic growth and some progress in our ambitious job creation goals. We call on all South Africans to buy local. As part of our commitments in the Local Procurement Social Accord – part of the New Growth Path consensus – we agreed to buy more products that are made in South Africa so that we can build our own manufacturing sector, while creating jobs for our own people. The social partners [organised labour, organised business, and government] acknowledged that the domestic manufacturing sector in our economy is under severe stress”, concluded. George.