Economic Affairs Ministers

Mr Ebrahim Patel

Mr Ebrahim Patel
Current Portfolio: 

Minister of Economic Development (2009-)

Background: 

Ebrahim Patel was appointed minister of economic development in May 2009, prior to which he was overall convenor for organised labour at the National Economic Development and Labour Council (Nedlac). Active in the trade union movement since his student days at the University of the Western Cape, Patel  has served on negotiating teams in numerous forums, including the International Labour Organisation (ILO). A founder member of the Congress of South African Trade Unions (Cosatu), he was general secretary of the South African Clothing and Textile Workers’ Union (SACTWU) before taking up his position as a member of cabinet. 
 

Mr Rob Davies

Mr Rob Davies
Current Portfolio: 

Minister of Trade and Industry (2009-)

Portfolio History: 
  • Deputy Minister of Trade and Industry (2005-2009)
Background: 

Before being appointed in May 2009 as minister of trade and industry, Rob Davies served four years as deputy minister in the same portfolio. A member of parliament in the National Assembly since 1994, he chaired the parliamentary portfolio committees on finance and on trade and industry. Davies participated in the Seattle, Dohar, Cancun and Hong Kong rounds of World Trade Organisation (WTO) talks as part of the South African ministerial delegation. In exile in Britain and Mozambique from the 1970s, he worked at the Centre for African Studies at the University of Maputo until returning to South Africa in 1990, when he became co-director of the Centre for Southern African Studies at the University of the Western Cape. Davies holds a BA Honours in economics from Rhodes University, a MA in international relations from the University of Southampton, and a Ph D in political studies from the University of Sussex. He is a member of the central committee and politburo of the South African Communist Party (SACP).

Mr Derek Andre Hanekom

Mr Derek Hanekom
Current Portfolio: 

Minister of Tourism (2018-)

Portfolio History: 
  • Minister of Toruism (2014-2017)
  • Minister of Science and Technology (2012-2014)
  • Deputy Minister of Science and Technology (2004-2012)
  • Minister of Agriculture and Land Affairs (1994-1999)
Background: 

Derek Andre Hanekom has served as deputy minister of science and technology since April 2004 until October 2012, when he took over the position as minister of the same department. A member of parliament in the National Assembly since 1994, he was minister of agriculture and land affairs until 1999. A full-time commercial farmer between 1978 and 1983, Hanekom was imprisoned for political activities and released in 1986. He then went into exile in Zimbabwe, where he served as coordinator of the Popular History Trust until his return to South Africa in 1990. Between 1990 and 1994, Hanekom was coordinator responsible for policy and development on the ANC’s land and agriculture desk, as well as ANC spokesman on agricultural matters. He has been a member of the ANC national executive committee since 1994. Although Hanekom has read widely on economics, land and agricultural policy, he has no formal academic qualifications.

Ms Lindiwe Zulu

Ms Lindiwe Zulu
Current Portfolio: 

Minister of Small Business Development (2014-)

Background: 

The Minister of Small Business Development, Lindiwe Zulu, was President Jacob Zuma’s special advisor on international relations during the last administration. She held various communication roles in the ANC and the ANC women’s league during the pre 1994 election period. She became the ANC Department of Information spokesperson for the 1994 elections and then joined the Gauteng legislature before holding the position as provincial deputy speaker in 1995. From 1999 she served as a special advisor to the Minister of Foreign Affairs until 2001 before taking up a position as chief director for Western and Central Africa until 2003. She then worked in the private sector at Vodacom before her appointment as the South African ambassador to Brazil from 2004 to 2007. On leaving her ambassadorial position she joined the ANC national executive and was elected to parliament in 2009.