20 June 2018


Government engages business to establish VTSD chambers of commerce


Kesalopa Gill


Bokone Bophirima Premier, Supra Mahumapelo, is leading the establishment of the Chambers of Commerce in all Villages, Townships and Small Dorpies (VTSD).

The purpose of the VTSD chambers of commerce is to mobilize formal and informal business across the board, including the private sector, to contribute to VTSD targeted provincial economic growth of six percent by 2020. It will also assist in facilitating engagements between government and business community on matters relating to economy and enterprise development programmes, in line with the provincial government's five concretes.

The five concretes are linked to the Fifth Administration's vision and policies, which have potential to reshape the course of sustainable development of business in the province. The programme is amongst strategies aimed at addressing the triple challenges of poverty, unemployment and inequality within the Bokone Bophirima province.

These strategies are an essential ingredient for achieving the National Development Plan goals, which emphasises that spatial distortions of apartheid should be adequately addressed.

The VTSD chambers of commerce will be jointly implemented by departments of Finance, Economy and Enterprise Development (FEED), Tourism, Local Government and Human Settlements, the Planning Commission in the Office of the Premier, municipalities and traditional authorities. The chambers of commerce will be set at different levels (village, township, small dorpies, municipalities and districts).

"Our approach is to build an inclusive VTSD economy that promotes economy and enterprise development, reduce unemployment in rural areas and utilise existing capacities within rural households to promote entrepreneurship," said FEED MEC, Wendy Nelson.

Nelson encourages all businesses to get in touch with their local municipalities in order to participate in the chamber of commerce programme.

"Very often markets fail the poor such as in rural areas, or in the development of new products or services markets. The risks and costs of participating in markets may be too high. In other instances, social or economic barriers may mean the poor are excluded from the markets. The status quo cannot forever characterise our VTSD economies, hence we have taken an initiative that businesses in the province begin to participate in the mainstream economy," said MEC Nelson.