Maimane outlines plan to save SA

Cape Town - Instead of the government creating five million new jobs, South Africa needs one million new entrepreneurs, according to DA leader Mmusi Maimane.

Speaking on his weekly Bokamoso online programme, Maimane said government should create an environment that allows new ventures to get off the ground and flourish. “And for starters, this means an economy that grows at around 5 to 7%, as opposed to the 1.4% we’re currently seeing,” he said.
Maimane said before South Africans could think of economic growth, it needed to ensure the basic infrastructure to support this growth is in place.

In his dream DA-led government, Maimane said he would break up the Eskom monopoly, allowing for more independent power producers to contribute to the national grid. He would also abandon the nuclear build programme. At the same time he would prioritise the maintenance of the road network in all provinces and roll out high-speed broadband nationwide.
Cutting red tape

“With the infrastructure in place, we would also need to ensure that all the obstacles that prevent businesses from getting off the ground are removed,” he said.
“The most obvious of these obstacles is the crippling red tape that small and medium enterprises must deal with,” said Maimane.

“The DA government in the Western Cape has already streamlined the administrative process considerably, making it easier to register a business and comply with legislation. We would replicate this across South Africa.
“Then we would establish a National Venture Capital Fund so that promising entrepreneurs have access to start-up capital without having to resort to micro-lenders.

“We would also establish Opportunity Centres – one-stop facilities where small businesses can conduct their affairs with government, such as registration and support. Along with this, we would introduce Opportunity Cards, which would give small business owners subsidised access to training and business support services.
Break up tender process

“A DA government would then break up government tenders into smaller contracts so that small and medium-sized companies can also compete for these tenders and get a foot in the door. There is nothing ‘broad-based’ or ‘empowering’ about awarding state contracts to the same large companies, over and over again."
He said he would replace the policy-incoherence of the current government with entrepreneur-friendly policies aimed solely at growth and jobs.

“We would replace the stifling red tape requirements of the current government with a streamlined process, so that business owners can focus on what they do best: running their business.
“We would make it easier to trade across our borders, easier to access international markets and easier for tourists and investors to visit our country.

“Because if we can encourage an efficient small business culture as well as create the conditions for a growing economy, we will solve our challenges of unemployment, poverty and inequality.
“South Africa has more than enough hard-working, resourceful people to make this happen. All it needs now is the right government.”
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