Growth, Transformation & Employment
THE SMME COUNCIL is committed to building an enabling environment to achieve a vibrant, diverse and globally competitive economy that harnesses the full economic and human potential of South Africa.
Harnessing the economic growth potential of South Africa requires transformation of the economy and much higher levels of employment. There are many constraints to growth. The economy is relatively concentrated, with limited participation, particularly by smaller businesses and people from historically disadvantaged groups. The regulatory structure is administratively onerous in many areas, and lacks sufficient certainty and predictability. Trade opportunities can be greatly enhanced, particularly within the Continent and in the BRICS and the G20 community to provide greater access and participation by South African businesses. The tax regime should be designed to be progressive and promote economic growth and promote small business development. The labour market, education and skills system and social security framework can be simplified and made more suitable for South African small businesses from all sectors to participate in the economy.
A key element of economic growth is rapidly accelerating the growth of black business.
- The drafting of a small business charter
- The establishment and enforcement of “Township and Rural Economic Development Policy”
- The enforcement of B-BBEE policies through the establishment of a “B-BBEE Enforcement and Small Business Development Department” in all institutions.
- The establishment of a small business stock exchange through collaboration with the BRICS and the G20 governments.
- The establishment of a Small Business Bank.
- Addressing regulatory barriers
- Opening up market opportunities
- Bringing down the cost
- Increasing the access to infrastructure and services
THE SMME COUNCIL acknowledges that both the pace and depth of inclusive economic transformation and small business development has been insufficient. THE SMME COUNCIL believes that urgent steps are required to be taken by government in collaboration with business, organised labour and civil society to accelerate and boost small business growth and engender change that will transform the economy and benefit the majority of South Africans. THE SMME COUNCIL therefore propose that government must adopt a “Graduate Small Business to Corporate” strategy.
Transformation, particularly black economic transformation, is a critical enabler for growth. THE SMME has identified critical elements required to activate and accelerate transformation:
- Establish a “B-BBEE Enforcement and Small Business Development Department” in all institutions and organisations
- Draft a clear Small Business Charter that will be a clear direction on the “Graduation of Small Business to Corporate”. This will accelerate the unemployment combat strategy, quickly absorb Africans into economic freedom, build township and rural economies faster, accelerate gender equality in business, accelerate economic development and the industrialisation of South Africa.
- Enable a transformative culture in business
- Demand-led skills development
- Enterprise development support
- Employment promotion – particularly of youth
Low levels of employment in South Africa are a result of low growth and lack of transformation. THE SMME COUNCIL believes that if constraints to growth can be addressed, and transformation can be accelerated, then employment opportunities will grow.
A key constraint to employment is gatekeeping by those who have. Businesses can actively participate at a business, sector, and national level in driving a more demand-led approach to skills development. A strong future focus is required, so that South Africa can be positioned to the advantage of emerging opportunities in the world of work.