Since 2010 the South African Government has introduced various policy initiatives which have formed the basis of industrial policy in the country. The incipient plan at that time was the 2010/2011¬2012/13 Industrial Policy Action Plan (IPAP2), released in February 2010 by the DTI, which in turn represented a modification and update of the previously introduced initial IPAP (2007) strategy. This second version attempted to focus on strategic efforts to diversify, intensify and enhance the domestic and international competitiveness of the country's industrial sector (Zarenda, H. 2013).
The diagnostic report (National Planning Commission Diagnostic Report 2011) provided a basis for the development of the NDP. The NDP is a 444-page strategic document that proposes to invigorate and expand economic opportunity through investment in infrastructure, innovation, private investment and entrepreneurship.1 The NDP addresses the need to reduce poverty and notes that millions of South Africans, the majority of whom are young people, are still unemployed. It calls for a ‘virtuous cycle’ of growth and development.2
Summary of the NDP
The NDP proposes high level objectives, by stating that:
South Africa has the capacity to ‘eliminate poverty and reduce inequality’ over the next two decades.3 With regard to poverty reduction, the NDP proposes a reduction from 39% of the population to zero in the proportion of people living below R418 (at 2009 prices) per person per month. The Plan proposes a reduction in inequality by aiming to achieve a reduction in the Gini coefficient from 0.7 to 0.6 (where 0=full equality and 1= maximum inequality)
South Africa should move to a State that includes the socially and economically excluded.
The NDP itself is divided into 15 chapters that deal with different aspects related to the achievement of its goals:
Broaden social cohesion and unity while redressing the inequities of the past.
Play a leading role in continental development, economic integration and human rights. 6
The NDP stipulates critical actions that should be implemented to achieve the above outcomes. These include but are not limited to7:
A social compact to reduce poverty and inequality, and raise employment and investment.
A strategy to address poverty and its impacts by broadening access to employment, strengthening the social wage, improving public transport and raising rural incomes.
Steps by the state to professionalise the public service, strengthen accountability, improve coordination and prosecute corruption.
Boost private investment in labour-intensive areas, competitiveness and exports, with adjustments to lower the risk of hiring younger workers.
An education accountability chain.
Phase in national health insurance.
Public infrastructure investment at 10 percent of gross domestic product (GDP).
Environmental sustainability and resilience to future shocks.
New spatial norms and standards – creating dense cities, improving transport, locating jobs where people live, upgrading informal settlements and fixing housing market gaps.
Reducing crime by strengthening criminal justice and improving community environments.
The NDP outlines elements of a decent standard of living, stating that while income, through employment or social security, is critical to defining living standards, human beings need more than income. They need adequate nutrition, transport, safe communities and clean neighbourhoods. The National Development Plan makes a firm commitment to achieving a minimum standard of living which can be progressively realised through a multi-pronged strategy.