South Africa’s “Foolhardy” Relations with Russia are criticized by FirstRand CEO

The CEO of Africa’s largest lender by market value claims that the government’s close links to Russia pose a “deep geopolitical danger” to South Africa’s banking sector.

Some of its main economic partners, such as the US and the EU, have criticized South Africa for military drills it held with Russian and Chinese forces last month. Several nations have also criticized the government of President Cyril Ramaphosa for refusing to ratify resolutions denouncing Russia’s conflict with Ukraine.

FirstRand Ltd. Chief Executive Officer Alan Pullinger stated at an investor event on Thursday in Johannesburg that nations adamantly opposed to the war in Ukraine have taken note of our government’s left-leaning excitement for China and Russia. The tremendous foolishness of the government’s disregard for the war and friendship with Russia, he declared.

According to Pullinger, the banking sector in South Africa depends on having access to foreign markets as well as worldwide clearing and settlement. According to him, the nation faces repercussions as a result of its posture toward Russia.

According to Pullinger, “Our collective access is a luxury; it is not a right, and it can be canceled with ease. FirstRand does not share the excitement of our government for Russia.”

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