President Cyril Ramaphosa’s announcement that four special ambassadors — including former finance minister Trevor Manuel — are to roam the globe in an aggressive pursuit of foreign investment “like a pack of lions” appears premature. It would have helped these ambassadors if they could have had a better story to tell than one of a business environment with stagnating profitability and growing losses where:

Only 25% of firms have earned sufficient income to be liable for company tax;

Firms with a taxable income below R10m decline at a rate of 31 per week;

A mere 635 companies are responsible for 77% of company tax; and

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by Business Day-

Johannes Wessels