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newsroom 10-27-2014 04:00 PM

Government boosts support for informal businesses
Government will launch a fund that will support informal sector enterprises, especially in the townships, to achieve inclusive growth in the country’s economy.

This was revealed at the Presidential Business Working Group session, which was hosted by President Jacob Zuma at the Sefako Makgatho Presidential Guesthouse in Pretoria on Friday.

The Business Working Group includes government and business leaders.

Presidency spokesperson Mac Maharaj said the meeting assessed progress and implementation action plans in focus areas that include education and skills development, infrastructure, the labour regulatory environment, regulatory impact on investment and inclusive growth.

“Five task teams co-chaired by government and business updated the Presidential Working Group on plans developed and action initiated in the past 15 months,” Maharaj said.

He said the meeting followed President Zuma’s undertaking in his June State of the Nation Address that government would work with the private sector to remove obstacles to investment, promote inclusive growth and build a more prosperous society.

“All stakeholders have agreed to keep working together in the interest of maintaining momentum in the implementation of the National Development Plan, and in the interest of securing the livelihoods and sustainability of the country’s workforce and business sector,” Maharaj said.

Some of the plans the task team on the labour market revealed was that an Indaba on labour relations would be convened by Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa in the near future.

Another further focus area for the task team was the promotion of workplace stability, democracy and productivity to build business confidence and promote transformation in the workplace.

The Presidential Infrastructure Coordinating Commission (PICC) would host quarterly meetings with business on the infrastructure build programme, update business on developments and create a forum for business to make inputs on the overall infrastructure build programme.

The commission was established to forge partnerships among government departments across all spheres of government to ensure that infrastructure investment is rolled out without unnecessary delays.

The projects under the PICC – headed by different departments - cover more than 150 specific infrastructure interventions in rail, road, ports, dams, irrigation systems, sanitation and electricity.

“The Skills and Education Task Team is working to achieve socio-economic development through a partnership that supports better quality education, youth employment, job creation and the development of skills to meet labour market needs,” Maharaj said. –

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