Speech by Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe at the Launch of the Proudly South African 'Buy Local' Summit
26 Nov 2012
Minister of the Trade and Industry, Dr. Rob Davis;
Gauteng MEC for Economic Development, Kholisile Nkosiphendule;
Chief Executive of Proudly South African, Advocate Leslie Sedibe;
The Proudly South African Board of Directors;
Ladies and gentlemen.
I wish to thank you for inviting me to address you on this occasion to launch the Proudly South African “Buy Local” Expo and Summit.
Indeed it is a good measure that you are gathered here to seek ways to remind all South Africans to “buy local” as they enter this period of good will and the festive season.
I must point out that, in the few minutes that I have walked through the expo I have been encouraged by the quality and beauty of products that demonstrate our ability to compete with the best in the world.
I know I speak for many South Africans when I say that today we are extremely proud of our nation, of how it has transformed itself and we are convinced that future generations will indeed inherit a united, democratic, non-sexist, non-racial and prosperous country.
As such the work that you do to promote our products or manufactured goods is very close to our hearts as we build our economy and create jobs.
Indeed all of us have a vested interest in promoting our country as an investment and tourism destination of choice.
Proudly South African has since its inception sought to wet the appetite of both domestic and international consumers for our locally produced goods. No doubt this has contributed directly to building national pride, patriotism and social cohesion.
All of us, as business leaders, organised labour and civil society, also carry the responsibility to cultivate a taste for South African manufactured products.
In this way the Proudly South African brand will thrive through all our actions as individuals and organisations.
The most pressing problems confronting our nation today is poverty, inequality, unemployment.
To overcome these disabilities we have in the last few years developed the New Growth Path, the Industrial Development Policy Action Plan 2 (IPAP2) and the National Development Plan.
These policies set out the terms, and requirements, for local content and skills transfer in all new development projects.
In this connection, therefore, the campaign to promote South African manufactured goods is a critical part of our growth and development strategy.
Through these policies we wish to, amongst others:
transform and diversify our economy away from its dependence on the extraction of mineral resources for export to one that supports local manufacturing;
Implement an agrarian reform and rural development strategy
Support the expansion of the services sector and
Leverage state policy in favour of small, medium, and micro enterprises
These interventions, together with the Local Procurement Accord signed by the Social Partners in NEDLAC last year, will go a long way in facilitating consultations to deal with competitiveness upgrading, supplier development, investment and labour retention through locally manufactured goods.
Ladies and gentlemen,
As we deliberate on ways to improve the sale of locally manufactured products, we must be reminded that we live in a global village where goods and services no longer recognise borders; where countries continuously strive to penetrate foreign markets to sell their products and; where protectionism of any guise is frowned upon and can elicit destructive reactions from other countries.
Thus as we seek to promote South African products we must do so well aware that our people as consumers are spoiled for choice.
This challenges us to be more competitive in terms of quality, price and desirability of South African goods.
Proudly South African must therefore continuously improve ways to develop and identify unique selling points of South African goods so that consumers find them more appealing than imported goods.
Achieving these goals demands that we should work together as government, organised labour, manufacturers and retailers in support of all the 52 Proudly South African programmes.
With those words I would like to thank you for your attention.
Issued by: The Presidency
26 Nov 2012
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