The Department of Trade and Industry (the dti) hosted a breakfast session with leading big business in Cape Town today to unpack the details of the newly-launched Strategic Partnership Programme (SPP), The session follows the official announcement of the new programme by the Minister of Trade and Industry, Dr Rob Davies at the Africa Trade Summit Expo and Smart Procurement World Conference yesterday.
Speaking to businesspeople on the side-lines of the conference, the Deputy Director-General of Incentives the dti, Ms Malebo Mabitje-Thompson said the session was hosted to encourage business to partner with the department on the SPP. She added that this was to ensure that there was mutual understanding in terms of what is expected from businesses which want to participate.
“We want to create a culture in South Africa where business can work with suppliers to give products to big business. Through the SPP, the dti wants commitment from big companies that they will buy products from the smaller companies to enable them to have a market and further develop them to become part of the strategic partners supply chain,” said Mabitje-Thompson.
She highlighted that this was done to broaden the scope of people participating in the economy.
“The programme is about supplier development and therefore we will work with existing brown field companies. We are looking for big business which will work with micro-enterprises to assure them of a market. The big companies need to identify micro-enterprises and assist them with issues of quality and standards,” said Mabitje-Thompson.
She added that one of the core criteria was that the business had to be involved in manufacturing.
The Chief Procurement Officer at Anglo Vaal Industries (AVI), Mr Deon Mocke said he was very excited about the SPP as it was one programme that would encourage collaboration between government and business as well as business with business, to develop suppliers in the country and take South African business forward.
“I believe this will be a game changer for us as a country. For instance, my company spends billions of rand importing coconut oil for some of the products we manufacture, and through this programme we can actually look at getting our supplies from local companies. This will help us to manage our procurement and put money in our people’s hands,” stressed Mocke.
He added that this was an opportunity to collaborate and also break monopolies.
The Group Procurement Manager of Coca Cola, Mr Wiso Mdlalo said his company already had programmes to assist smaller and medium enterprises to develop and be sustainable. He said he was happy about the new programme and would explore ways through which they could participate.
the dti will be rolling out similar business engagements to other parts of the country in order to ensure that there is broader understanding and participation in the scheme.
Issued by: The Department of Trade and Industry on 8 March 2017