South Africa's Minister of Trade and Industry, Dr Rob Davies says the positive impact and success of the Buy Local Campaign is dependent on the private sector and consumers throwing their weight behind the initiative aimed at adding impetus to the country’s economy’s growth. Minister Davies was speaking at the 3rd Buy Local Summit and Expo that is hosted by Proudly South African at the Emperors Place in Ekurhuleni today.
“In line with the theme of the Summit, which is “Buy Local – Make it Your Business”, it is incumbent upon the business sector and consumers to join the government and commit themselves to supporting our localisation efforts by making it their business to promote and buy locally-produced goods. If all of us can take decision to buy locally-manufacture products, we can create a more positive future for our country in terms of employment opportunities,” said Minister Davies.
He added that government was committed to ensuring that public entities took steps to ensure that there was a progressive and incremental movement towards fulfilling the aspirational target of 75% local content in procurement, which was agreed upon by all stakeholders in the formulation of the Localisation Procurement Accord.
Minister Davies stated local procurement was one of the tools that government was putting in place to promote and strengthen industrialisation. Others include amendments to the Preferential Procurement Policy Framework Act and designation of locally-manufactured goods for procurement by government.
“We cannot expect to grow, develop and increase employment as a country if we simply continue to be located in a world economy as producers and exporters of primary products and importers of finished goods. Part of efforts to bring transformation in our economy such that it could create sustainable, decent work and address poverty and equality, which are our major challenges, required that we bring a structural change. That is the reason why industrialisation has become the imperative of our government, “ said Davies.
Speaking at the same event, the Minister of Public Enterprise, Malusi Gigaba said Eskom has set itself a target of spending over R24-billion a year to businesses owned by black youth by 2017.
He stated that it is critical to use state owned companies to open up opportunities for emerging black miners.
“Eskom has negotiated an export capacity allocation at Richards Bay which will be used to provide emerging miners with access to global markets. We have also established a task team involving Transnet and the Chamber of mines to determine how the expansion of the Richards Bay coal terminal can be leveraged to enable access to more capacity for emerging miners,” added Minister Gigaba.
|Minister Davies cutting the ribbon to open the Buy Local Summit|