Construction Industry Plays Critical Role in Creating an Enabling Environment in South Africa
*** Investment Lead in the Private Office of the President, Dr Anthony Costa speaking during the Johannesburg Construction Permits celebration that took place in Pretoria today ***
The construction industry plays a critical role in creating an enabling business environment. It is also a vital sector for the country’s economy, responsible for creating jobs, stimulating investment and improving infrastructure. This was said by the Investment Lead in the Private Office of the President, Dr Anthony Costa, during the City of Johannesburg Construction Permits celebration in Pretoria today.
According to Costa, the construction sector is a significant contributor to the Gross Domestic Product and plays an important role in the country’s development.
“In addition to its economic contribution, the construction industry also plays a critical role in creating an enabling business environment. A well-functioning construction sector is essential for attracting investment, supporting small and medium-sized enterprises, and promoting innovation. By making it easier for businesses to navigate the construction permit process, we are helping to create a more conducive environment for entrepreneurship and economic growth,” said Costa.
Costa added that initiative such as the construction permit system were critical within the broader framework of enhancing competitiveness and simplifying processes for both large and small businesses.
“The replication of the principles of the Ease of Doing Business Programme into practical initiatives across government to improve the end-user experience will undoubtedly have a positive multiplier effect not just for construction permits but across the board to co-create with private sector an enabling business environment,” he said.
Costa further said that the City of Johannesburg’s web-based construction permit system was an example of how technology can be used to create an enabling business environment by modernising the process and reducing lead times, the city is making it easier for businesses to invest and grow in the province.
The Department of Trade, Industry and Competition (the dtic) commended the City of Johannesburg for its outstanding achievement of developing a web-based construction permit system. The event also recognised individuals who were key in making the permit system a reality.
The new web-based system has streamlined and modernised the manual Site Development and Building Plan permit system. The City of Johannesburg is the first South African city to pilot the open-source system. The system provides real-time updates of every stage of the application process, invaluable information that ensures transparency throughout the building plan application process.
Government Support Will Help Transform Poultry Industry, Ensure Food Security
*** The Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director of Baramakama Poultry, Mr Ofentse Moloko ***
The support that government provides to black-owned companies operating in the poultry industry will contribute significantly in transforming the industry and ensuring that there is food security in the country. However, it is imperative for government to realise that the sustainability of these businesses depends on black companies occupying the entire value chain of the industry. This is the view of the 37-year-old North West industrialist, Mr Ofentse Moloko.
Moloko is the Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director of Baramakama Poultry, a family owned egg-laying chickens company situated in Molote City, North West.
Baramakama received support to the tune of R50 million from the Department of Trade, Industry and Competition (the dtic) and its development finance institution, the Industrial Development Corporation (IDC), as part of the Black Industrialists Programme. The programme is part of government’s efforts to accelerate the quantitative and qualitative increase and participation of Black Industrialists in the South African economy, selected industrial sectors and value chains.
“We are a perfect example of the success that black-owned companies can achieve with the support of government in the poultry industry. We started from nowhere in 2016 when my father decided to use his savings to invest back into the community of Molote City. We decided to establish a poultry business, specifically in the layers as they showed the greatest opportunity for employment creation as well as massive room for economical and ownership transformation. For almost three years we persistently and continuously knocked on the doors of all the private banks in this country, but the doors were all slammed on us after months of completing their processes, mainly due to the land belonging to the community. When the dtic and IDC decided to fund our business after a thorough due diligence process, it was like music to our ears,” says Moloko.
The financial support from the dtic and IDC enabled Baramakama to expand its operations by adding five new automated chicken houses and a modern, state-of-the-art pack station. The support was noticeably impactful as the company managed to increase the premises’ carrying capacity from 100 000 hens before the support to 280 000 after the infrastructural expansion. In addition, forty new jobs were created as the number of permanent employees increased from 80 to 112 as all aspects of the business expanded. Almost 80% of the employees are young people, while 44% are women.
“Today our operation runs 24 hours per day and on average we produce 225 000 eggs per day at full capacity. The support we received from government has made us a recognisable and important player in the industry,” says Moloko.
Although he appreciates the importance and recognises the value of the support that the government provides to the Black Industrialists, Moloko strongly believes that government should consider extending its support across the value chain of the poultry industry to achieve sustainability and ensure success.
“The government support needs to cut across the value chain if we want meaningful transformation of the industry, and if we want the Black Industrialists to play an important and discernible role in food security in the country. This includes feed production, hatcheries, abattoirs, chick rearing, processing, as well as market access. Although we regard ourselves as a success after obtaining the support, we are left at the mercy of our key competitors from whom we source feed and hens. That makes us vulnerable as the supply tabs can and are regularly switched on and off depending on how they want to control and benefit from the market conditions,” adds Moloko.
Moloko does not pin all his hopes on the Poultry Sector Master Plan, which was developed in close partnership between government and several stakeholders in the industry, including poultry producers, processors, exporters, importers and organised labour. One of the objectives of the plan is to increase the level of black participation and particularly ownership across the value chain and increase employment and worker share-ownership in the sector.
Moloko believes that most strategic decisions taken within the Poultry Master Plan depend much on the existing large players in the industry, who through their actions do not easily allow black players into the more profitable value chain channels. But he remains resolute and hopeful that with more black players in the value chain, the industry will not only transform, but allow healthy competition to the benefit of all participants.
Sacsa congratulates Dragon Aerospace for launch of satellite Agrisat-1/ZA008
The South African Council for Space Affairs (SACSA) congratulates Dragonfly Aerospace for its successful launch of their satellite, AgriSAT-1 /ZA 008 from USA, Cape Canaveral on a Space X Falcon 9 rocket- Transporter mission 6.
Chairperson of the SACSA, Ms Pontsho Maruping, says this launch is a historical milestone in the South African space regulatory regime, since it is the first ever-commercial satellite licensed in South Africa following seven government-sponsored satellites.
“This successful launch by Dragonfly of AGRISAT satellite shows yet again South Africa’s international capability in the space industry and will boost its credibility for investment in the space area. The launch will enable Dragonfly to continue with its other projects of building a constellation of satellites, whilst firming up localisation through involvement of other companies in this sector and related sector,” she said.
Dragonfly Aerospace, a space technology solutions company based in the Western Cape was established in 2018. The company has invested extensively in infrastructure and Intellectual Property development with the possibility of securing more contracts for future missions.
It is understood that with this launch, there is an estimated future revenue to South Africa of $108m pending successful operation.
Maruping added that the benefits include an increase in the company’s productive capacities, employing and skilling more high-value personnel and enabling broader benefits to other related companies in the industry.
Bongani Lukhele – Director: Media Relations
The Department of Trade, Industry and Competition (the dtic)
Tel: (012) 394 1643
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