Township Economy - Business Media MAGS

Township Economy

In the 1980s, South Africa produced 50 per cent of the world’s gold, but those days are gone. However, the premier of the Gauteng Province, South Africa’s economic powerhouse, is championing the township economy as the country’s new gold. With a focus on the township economy, South Africa could potentially address one of its most pressing issues: unemployment, especially among the youth. This requires integration, capacity-building and collaboration among various entities, including the government, private sector, communities, and nonprofit organisations.

In this issue of Township Economy, we go to the townships to identify some businesses that testify to the idea that the township economy is indeed the new gold. We discover how Shape Café in Sebokeng is giving township ideas a place to congregate, MTN is investing R2.2-billion in townships to boost participation in the digital economy and create connected communities, and Tiger Brands’ Route-to-Market initiative is bringing stock closer to spaza shops and helping owners to spend most of their time selling as opposed to travelling long distances to buy stock. Our exploration also delves into the Gauteng Economic Development Act, a legislative effort to bolster the township economy. This act offers tangible government support, such as tax incentives, market access and preferential procurement.

Additionally, we shine a spotlight on the Small Enterprise Development Agency’s Township and Rural Empowerment Programme. This programme is a lifeline for vulnerable small businesses, providing them with training, mentorship and crucial access to funding. This issue is a treasure trove of information for township businesses, equipping them with the knowledge and resources they need to thrive.

Busani Moyo, editor

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