Towards an inclusive, green growth path : a review of South Africa's National Development Plan's approach to economic growth

Cwele, Fundisiwe (2019-12)

Thesis (MPhil)--Stellenbosch University, 2019.

Thesis

ENGLISH SUMMARY : To counter current challenges, South Africa’s growth path must support the greening of the economy, ensure the sustainable use of natural resources and address poverty, inequality and unemployment concurrently. The country’s growth path therefore needs to be both green and inclusive. This study aims to develop a conceptual framework that identifies the determinants of such a path and it reviews South Africa’s National Development Plan against this framework to understand whether it has the characteristics necessary to move the country onto an inclusive, green growth path. It is argued that the country needs to transition to this path to address the socioeconomic and environmental challenges it faces. A traditional narrative literature review was conducted to create the conceptual framework, with the focus on the alternative pro-poor, inclusive and green growth paths to identify the necessary determinants. A coding process was used to identify five categories and their related themes: the social category with themes of social protection, education and training, and poverty alleviation; economic category covering growth and structural transformation, small business development, financial inclusion, job creation and inequality reduction; environmental category comprising themes of green industries, natural resource management, green finance, green jobs and green skills; spatial development category encompassing themes of economic infrastructure and rural development; and the governance category focused on themes of strong institutions and public participation. The five categories and 16 themes provide a framework for an inclusive, green growth path. South Africa’s National Development Plan, specifically chapter 3 focused on economic growth and chapter 5 focused on the environment, is analysed against this framework. Various other chapters related to education, training and innovation (chapter 9), social protection (chapter 11), economic infrastructure (chapter 4), the rural economy (chapter 6) and building a capable and developmental state (chapter 13) are also reviewed to provide context. The thematic content analysis indicates that the National Development Plan displays many of the characteristics necessary to transition to an inclusive, green growth path, but it does not adequately integrate economic growth and environmental sustainability considerations, nor does it place enough emphasis on the need for supporting green finance models, green industries and the necessary green policy design. This study provides a set of recommendations related to fiscal, economic and industrial policymaking and policy planning that would support the transition and contribute to sustainable development in South Africa.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING : Om vandag se uitdagings te kan hanteer moet die weg van ontwikkeling in Suid-Afrika die vergroening van die ekonomie bevorder, die volhoubare benutting van natuurlike hulpbronne verseker en armoede, ongelykheid en werkloosheid ter gelyketyd aanspreek. Die ontwikkelingsrigting van die land moet dus beide groen en inklusief wees. Hierdie studie beoog die ontwikkeling van ‘n konseptuele raamwerk wat die bepalende faktore vir so ‘n ontwikkelingsrigting identifiseer, en dit gee ‘n oorsig van die Suid-Afrikaanse Nasionale Ontwikkelingsplan teen die agtergrond van daardie raamwerk, ten einde te bepaal of dit wel die eienskappe bevat wat die land op ‘n pad van groen ontwikkeling en inklusiwiteit sal plaas. Dit stel ook voor dat die land behoort oor te skakel na daardie pad om sosio-ekonoomiese-en-omgewingsuitdagings die hoof te kan bied. ‘n Oorsig van tradisionele literatuur is gedoen vir die skepping van die konseptuele raamwerk, met die fokus op die alternatiewe pro-arme-, inklusiewe- en groen ontwikkelings- rigtings in die identifisering van die noodwendige determinante. ’n Proses van kodering is gebruik in die bepaling van vyf kategorieë met verwante temas: die maatskaplike kategorie met temas van gemeenskapsbeskerming, opvoeding en opleiding en armoedeverligting; die ekonomie-kategorie wat insluit groei en strukturele verandering, kleinsake-ontwikkeling, finansiële insluiting, werkskepping en ongelykheidsvermindering; die omgewingskategorie, omvattende temas van groen industrieë, bestuur van natuurlike hulpbronne, groen finansiering, groen arbeid en groen vaardighede; ruimteontwikkeling, insluitende temas van ekonomiese infrastruktuur en plattelandse ontwikkeling; en die regeringskategorie, gefokus op temas van sterk instellings en openbare deelname. Hierdie vyf kategorieë en sestien temas stel ‘n raamwerk daar vir inklusiewe en groen ontwikkeling. Suid-Afrika se Nasionale Ontwikkelingsplan, spesifiek Hoofstuk 3, wat gefokus is op ekonomiese groei, word ontleed teen die agtergrond van die daargestelde raamwerk. Verskeie ander hoofstukke, wat verband hou met opvoeding, opleiding en vernuwing/innovasie (Hoofstuk 9), gemeenskapsbeskerming (Hoofstuk 11), ekonomiese infrastruktuur (Hoofstuk 4), die plattelandse ekonomie (Hoofstuk 6) en die bou van ‘n vaardige ontwikkelingsstaat (Hoofstuk 13) word ook in oorsig geneem om konteks te verleen. Die tematiese inhoudsanalise toon aan dat die Nasionale Ontwikkelingsplan verskeie van die vereiste eienskappe vir oorskakeling na ‘n iinklusiewe pad van groen ontwikkeling bevat, maar dat dit nie die oorwegings van ekonomiese groei en volhoubaarheid voldoende integreer nie, en verder ook nie genoeg klem plaas op die noodsaak vir onderskraging van groen finansieringsmodelle, groen industrie en die noodsaaklike groen beleidsontwerp nie. Hierdie ondersoek bied ‘n versameling voorstelle aan vir fiskale, ekonomiese en industriële beleidskepping- en –beplanning wat die oorgang sou onderskraag en bydra tot volhoubare ontwikkeling in Suid-Afrika.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/107219
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