ANC Secretary General Ace Magashule briefing at Luthuli House in Johannesburg on the outcomes of the past weekend's NEC meeting. Picture: Simphiwe Mbokazi/African News Agency (ANA)

Johannesburg - The ANC still wants South Africa's central bank to be nationalised, but this will not affect the institution's mandate or independence, party officials said on Tuesday.

Unlike most central banks in the world, the South African Reserve Bank has been privately owned since it was established in 1921. But its shareholders have no control over monetary policy, financial stability policy or banking regulation.

The ANC resolved at a party conference in December 2017 to move to full state ownership of the South African Reserve Bank (SARB).

"Our position on the nationalisation of the reserve bank has not changed. If you talk about sovereignty of that bank, belonging to the people, is one and the same thing," ANC Secretary General Ace Magashule told reporters.Magashule was briefing the media on the outcomes of the ANC's NEC meeting which took place over the past three days.

"We have said we are going to implement our decisions...All the decisions which must be implemented, must be implemented in a responsible way," he added.

ANC deputy secretary general Jessie Duarte said the mandate of the South African Reserve Bank, which is enshrined in the Constitution, would not change if the bank was nationalised.

"(The mandate) cannot change because of who the shareholder is, that's not the issue," Duarte said.

Some officials in the ANC have called in recent months for the bank's mandate to be extended beyond inflation-targeting to include boosting economic growth and unemployment.

Governor Lesetja Kganyago said last week that a debate over ownership of the central bank was increasing investor uncertainty and fuelling the risk premium attached to the country's debt. 

Reuters