Common sense starting to prevail? Gigaba hires technocrat to replace Michael Sachs.

JOHANNESBURG — Recent noises out of Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba‘s office seem to suggest that a swing towards a more rational approach towards the country’s economy could be underfoot. It’s early days still but respected budget chief Michael Sachs has been replaced by another technocrat, who has a decade’s worth of experience in Treasury – Ian Stuart. I’ve posted a brief LinkedIn summary of Stuart’s career underneath Gigaba’s press statement. Since 2015, Stuart has been the chief director for fiscal policy at Treasury; he joined Treasury in 2006. However, there is a caveat to mention with regard to this latest development: Stuart is replacing Sachs in an acting role, so it’s unclear how long he will remain budget chief for at this stage. But with this latest hire, a planned probe into SARS’ revenue under-collection as well as President Jacob Zuma’s so-called recent ‘budget rethink’, one has to wonder if Gigaba is slowly starting to stamp his authority on Treasury and even preparing the ground-work for a big change come post-ANC elective conference… – Gareth van Zyl

South Africa’s Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba speaks during a news conference before he presents his mid-term budget to parliament in Cape Town on October 25, 2017. Photographer: Dean Hutton/Bloomberg



Mr Ian Stuart has been appointed as the acting Deputy Director-General for the Budget Office. This follows the application by Mr Michael Sachs for a lateral transfer from National Treasury to other areas of public service earlier this month.

Mr Stuart is currently the Chief Director for Fiscal Policy in the Budget Office within the National Treasury, a position he has held since August 2015 to date. The primary role of the Fiscal Policy unit is to set the fiscal stance. This requires extensive technical knowledge of the budget, together with strong writing and presentation skills for public engagements.

Some of Mr Stuart’s responsibilities include: lead author on fiscal policy matters for South African Budget documents and the Budget speech; and Public Financial Management Advisor for the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

Mr Stuart joined the National Treasury in 2006 as a senior policy analyst and worked his way through the ranks to become a Chief Director for Fiscal Policy. He worked closely with the outgoing DDG Michael Sachs. He holds an MComm Economics cum laude from the Stellenbosch University; an Honours in Economics; and an Honours Philosophy cum laude, among other qualifications.

Minister of Finance Malusi Gigaba, congratulated Mr Stuart on his appointment as the acting head of the Budget Office, and wished him well in his role. The Minister again thanked outgoing Budget Office DDG Michael Sachs for his unwavering service, strong commitment and significant contribution he made to Treasury over the years.

Issued on behalf of National Treasury
Date: 29 November 2017

Ian Stuart
Ian Stuart

Ian Stuart’s experience according to his LinkedIn profile: