IMF rumours may be the scare SA needs

- | 4 months ago

The threat of an International Monetary Fund bailout, unthinkable a few years ago, may force South Africa's government to push through the reforms it needs to rescue the economy.

An expanded bailout for struggling power utility Eskom and calls from other state companies for support have strained the nation's budget, prompting business groups and analysts to warn the country could be pressed to ask the IMF to help keep a lid on ballooning debt. "The IMF is used as a scare tactic to make the government aware that if we don't implement the necessary policies, we may be forced to turn to them", Thabi Leoka, an independent economist, said in an emailed response to questions.

"South Africa's problems are not insurmountable.

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