The Gauteng Enterprise Propeller (GEP), an entity that falls under the province’s Economic Development Department, has signed a partnership that is expected to boost small businesses and create jobs.
Gauteng Economic Development MEC, Mxolisi Xayiya, said the Propeller’s new partnership with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) would, through supplier links between small enterprises and bigger firms, assist in transforming the province’s and South Africa’s economy.
His statement follows the GEP and UNDP's announcement at a signing ceremony last week.
“UNDP South Africa will utilise the invaluable ten-year experience gathered by the UNDP Mexico’s Supplier Development Programme (SDP), to build this team.
“The experience from the Mexico, Honduras and El Salvador Offices will be of great assistance in tailor-making a programme that addresses the specific local dynamics of this province.
“This programme also spells good news for small and medium enterprises in Gauteng. Such business will be taught important lessons in sustaining and expanding their participation in local and foreign markets to create jobs and reduce inequality and alleviate poverty,” he said.
Xayiya said this comes as Gauteng, which has a population of over 12 million people, remains South Africa’s economic hub with a contribution of 34.5% to the country’s GDP.
Despite this, the anecdotal evidence still show that the province’s economy requires a structural change to be sustainable and to address unemployment levels of over 20% and worrying inequalities.
Xayiya said the partnership will assist in transforming the economy.
“This objective will be pursued through an in-depth, demand-oriented intervention of 9-10 months geared at transforming SMMEs and cooperatives boosting their sales, employment levels and inculcating lasting effects in company management.
“The UNDP partnership also brings with it a network of business associations through its Private Sector Development Forum. This is a trilateral partnership between UNDP, Business Unity South Africa (BUSA) and the Black Business Council (BBC), which was established in 2012.”