Small-business development gets support

By on June 4, 2014
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A new ministry responsible for small-business development has been established and is to be headed by Lindiwe Zulu, President Jacob Zuma’s former foreign affairs adviser. Krysia Gaweda examines the latest addition to cabinet.

President Jacob Zuma (72) who took office for a second five-year term after the ruling African National Congress’ (ANC) election win on 7 May 2014, enlarged his cabinet to 35 members from 33 and created the new ministry for small-business development.

During the announcement, Zuma stated that the development of the small-business sector is critical to economic development and transformation. “You will recall that we stated in the inauguration address that the economy will take center-stage. We have thus established a new ministry for small-business development.”

In response to the announcement, Nazeem Martin, MD of Business Partners Limited, a specialist risk finance company for formal small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in South Africa, says that it is encouraging government has acknowledged that SMEs in this country require support and have prioritised this by establishing a ministry for small-business development.

In addition, reports have stated that the ministry is expected to review regulations that need to be adapted to ease the burden on small businesses and allow for direct interaction with the government to improve growth.

Martine explained how red tape has remained an issue for many SME owners and encouraged the ministry to lessen the compliance burden of businesses. “It will be a significant step forward in tackling SA’s unemployment figures,” says Martin.

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