Lindiwe Zulu says the amount allocated by the fiscus for small-business development is a ‘far cry’ from what is needed.
Small Business Development Minister Lindiwe Zulu wants to mobilise the approximately R15bn sitting in the budgets of different departments and their agencies for small- and medium-sized enterprise development to ensure there is a better return on investment.
The minister outlined her vision for the sector in replies to questions to the economic cluster of ministers in the National Assembly on Tuesday.
Zulu conceded, however, that the amount allocated by the fiscus for small-business development is a “far cry” from what is needed to support black-, female- and youth-owned, small and medium businesses and co-operatives, who experience barriers to entry into the formal sector of the economy.
This year, the department will target 641 beneficiaries to the value of R256m for its black business-supplier development programme. The co-operative incentive scheme will target 302 beneficiaries to the value of R78m. The enterprise incubation programme has been allocated R49.7m and the national informal business upliftment scheme R99.4m, for the current financial year. The Small Enterprise Development Agency will get R743m this year.
Youth-owned enterprises will receive particular focus this year, Zulu said. She also believes the mushrooming of shopping malls needs to be halted as they are replacing the old general dealers, resulting in job losses. This will require the collaboration of all three spheres of government.
The government’s aim, she said, is to increase the contribution of the small-business sector to GDP from 42% to 45% by 2019 and to increase the number of small- and medium-sized enterprises and start-ups from 2.5-million to 2.56-million.
By LINDA ENSOR. Posted on 07 June 2017 on www.businesslive.co.za