Dr Roelof Botha | Economist Speaker | Political Commentator

Dr Roelof Botha – Economist has been an economic advisor to PricewaterhouseCoopers for the past 17 years and is an experienced presenter & sought after consultant.

In 2005, he received the Sake-24/ABSA award for Economist of the Year, based on the accuracy of forecasts of key economic indicators.

He is a regular commentator on topical macroeconomic issues (in the national and regional media) and has authored more than 100 articles, books and research Dr Roelof Botha-Economist publications.

Dr Roelof Botha

Dr Roelof Botha’s broad experience includes management accountant of a listed industrial company, financial editor of a daily newspaper, economic policy advisor in the Department of Finance, senior economics lecturer at the University of Pretoria & University of Johannesburg, chief economist of the South African Federated Chamber of Industries, and visiting lecturer at the Gordon Institute of Business Science (GIBS) & Tshwane University of Technology.

As a previous winner of the Finmedia Economist of the Year Award and with more than 40 years of experience, Dr Roelof Botha is exceptionally well-qualified to advise executives and managers on prospects for the South African economy, including the following:
• No recession exists yet (year-on-year basis)
• Welcome return of the primary sectors
• Global economy gaining some momentum
• Rand exchange rate remains undervalued
• Interest rates may still come down
• South Africa’s competitiveness advantages
• Reasons for a swift recovery to investment grade for all of South Africa’s bonds

His past experience as an economic policy advisor at National Treasury and regular discussions with political analysts (including his father, who served in the late Nelson Mandela’s first Cabinet) also allow him to provide sensible reflections on the policy environment, in general, and the likely implications of the imminent leadership change in Government, in particular.
For a provocative keynote that provides a balanced and authoritative perspective on South Africa’s economic and political outlook, mingled with some optimism, Dr Roelof Botha – Economist Political Speaker is your speaker of choice.

His father (also Roelof) was the 2nd longest-serving Minister of Foreign Affairs in the world & also served in the late Nelson Mandela’s first democratic cabinet. His eldest son (another Roelof) is a partner at Sequoia Venture Capital in Silicon Valley, where he co-founded PayPal & engineered the YouTube/Google acquisition.

Roelof obtained Honours and Master’s degrees in economics (cum laude) at the University of Pretoria, whilst the Doctorate was completed at the University of Johannesburg. He has followed a diversified career in management accounting; financial journalism; lecturing; consulting; and economic research.

Dr Roelof Botha – Economist


The state of the nation
An informed keynote address by Dr Roelof Botha

In the midst of unprecedented exchange rate volatility during 2016, the South African currency slowly but surely started to shed its undervalued status.

In the process, the rand has been one of the best-performing currencies in the world over the past 12 months, strengthening by 21% against the US dollar.

This outcome was accurately predicted by Dr Roelof Botha (part-time economic advisor to PwC) in January last year. View List of Speakers Q-Z

His current research indicates a number of reasons to believe that the rand will experience a relatively stable 2017, SA bonds will retain their investment grade status and that economic growth may surprise on the upside.

The global economy
 Global economy gaining some momentum
 China facing structurally lower growth
 The dawning of a new World order- multiple superpowers
 International credit ratings agencies losing face

Socio-political overview – South Africa
 Labour unrest – a serious threat, but potential solutions exist
 The nature of social unrest – a macro or micro-level problem?
 Unpacking the NDP- which objectives will receive priority?
 A time-line for the end of the tripartite alliance

Prospects for the regional & South African economy
 GDP growth forecasts for SADC
 Relatively low interest rate environment set to continue
 Relatively stable exchange rate expected over the medium term
 Trends in household consumption expenditure
 Capital formation trends
 Gradual return of the “wealth effect”
 Constraints to and drivers of economic growth in 2015

 The diminishing role of the mining sector
 Threats facing agriculture & food security
 Commodity cycle downturn enters 5th year – time for an upswing?
 Energy – structural shifts in supply & the demand response
 The portfolio investment industry – lucrative & growing



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