Brian Sokutu
Senior Print Journalist
4 minute read
31 Mar 2021
5:45 am

Some SOEs worth keeping out of private hands, says economist

Brian Sokutu

Despite pushing for controlled privatisation, economist Thabi Leoka has cautioned against wholesale disposal of state-owned entities, numbering more than 720.

Picture: Michel Bega

Controlled privatisation, outright sale and repurposing of some of South Africa’s strategic state-owned enterprises (SOEs), could be the government’s solution to loss-making SOEs, according to leading economists. Some are struggling to survive following the billions siphoned off during the decade of the Jacob Zuma presidency – SOEs were seen as cash cows by his allies, the infamous Gupta family. Despite pushing for controlled privatisation, economist Thabi Leoka has cautioned against wholesale disposal of state-owned entities, numbering more than 720, arguing that strategic rail and logistics company Transnet was too important to the country and the continent. Leoka said aerospace and...