Johannesburg - Business Unity SA on Friday said it was pleased with President Jacob Zuma's reaffirmation of the National Development Plan (NDP) in his state-of-the-nation address.

“We remain less optimistic about the effective implementation of the NDP,” Busa chief executive Nomaxabiso Majokweni said in a statement.

“We will, however, continue with our engagements with government aimed at the implementation of the NDP and boosting economic growth.”

The NDP is an economic policy framework aimed at eliminating poverty and inequality by 2030.

Busa also welcomed measures to address youth unemployment.

“In a climate of weak economic growth, incentives of this nature encourage youth employment,” she said.

“The commitment to slash red tape, bureaucracy and to also ensure overall improvement in regulatory impact assessment will assist to improve the investment environment.”

The SA Chamber of Commerce and Industry (Sacci) welcomed Zuma's “optimistic tone” but wanted a more “forward-looking” view.

“The Sona is a crucial indicator of policy development over the short to medium term, but should include measurable commitments to ensure greater certainty,” Sacci chief executive Neren Rau said in a statement.

He said after the election, the new administration could benefit from clear guidance in dealing with socio-economic problems based on the experience of the current administration.

“Sacci appreciates the president's commitment towards building a dynamic and inclusive economy, especially the promise to work more closely with business, and looks forward to strengthening this productive relationship in 2014.”

Zuma delivered his state-of-the-nation address in Parliament on Thursday night. - Sapa