When South Africa became a democratic nation in 1994, the country opened its doors once again to the international business world. The private sector, which had been intensely self-involved during the previous decades, played a significant role in the transition to a nation readmitted to the global economy.
The new South African government understood that it was important to include the business sector in the transformation of the country; and as a result, the business world itself has seen many changes. Doing business in South Africa has changed for the better in a number of ways.
1. New economic and commercial opportunities
Business is now open to a whole new set of economic and commercial opportunities that were previously inaccessible.
2. South Africa is an economic force
South Africa’s high ranking on indexes such as the World Economic Forum Global Competitiveness Report, the World Bank Ease of Doing Business Index and the World Economic Forum Travel and Tourism Index, all show a country that is s an attractive trade partner and investment option.
3. The Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE)
The JSE is rated amongst the top 20 stock exchanges in the world by market capitalisation. This is due to the mature, efficient and secure nature of the exchange; governed by world-class regulation, trading, clearing, settlement assurance and risk management. A key feature of the JSE is the excellent investor protection it affords, as well as its continuing connection with the London Stock Exchange (LSE).
4. Ease of doing business
When compared to the other BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) nations, South Africa comes first in five of the 10 categories that the World Bank uses to assess the ease of doing business in a country. South Africa shines in starting a business, dealing with construction permits, credit approval, investor protection, as well as in paying taxes. This means that the country is a particularly attractive option for foreign investors, as they can feel secure in their investments.
5. Improved infrastructure
South Africa boasts a sophisticated banking sector, a modern transport network, extensively available energy and high-functioning telecommunications facilities. The government is still seeking to make further improvements to current infrastructure, all with the success of the economy in mind.
6. An open business environment
The most recent development is the new Companies Act that eliminates the need to reserve a company name, while at the same time, implementing measures to simplify incorporation documents.
7. The rehabilitation of financially distressed companies
South Africa has recently implemented a re-organisation process in aid of the recovery of companies which are financially unstable. This policy further highlights the attractiveness of the country’s business sector, as investors know that they have a safety net available.
These are just a select few of the benefits of ‘doing business’ in the new South Africa. The government has worked hard to open up the economy in order to make business as simple as possible which is evident in its business policies. The South African business sector is now attractive to both foreign investors and citizens, as the country’s law surrounding business protect both parties.
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