Small businesses should use the many opportunities accessible to them to ensure that they become job creators and not job seekers. These are the words of the Free State MEC of the Department of Economic, Small Business Development, Tourism and Environmental Affairs (Destea), Makalo Mohale.
Mohale was addressing ten enterprises from the Agro-processing: Textile and Arts and Crafts sectors, that made their mark at the South African International Trade Exhibition (Saitex), which took place from 23 to 25 June 2019 at the Gallagher Convention Centre in Johannesburg.
“Trade and export promotion remain an integral part towards changing the structure of the economy and means of production, and I hope that these enterprises will get possible investors as well as access to markets,” said Mohale.
Through exhibitions at this premium expo, the department provided local enterprises with a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to showcase their products to national and international markets.
Kalaku Tshabalala of Nthati’s Arts and Craft Jewellery said: “I hope to access a bigger market so that I can be able to employ more staff and expand the business to other sectors apart from arts and craft. My business operates from Qwaqwa and sells necklaces, earrings, bangles and copper wire PVC.”
Busisiwe Sithebe of Buska Foods explained that networking and meeting potential clients are of utmost importance to her business. “The department is providing us with an opportunity to network with other similar markets and also to hear customer views as it is important in business. My business operates from Kroonstad and I sell processed vegetables such as beetroot, carrots, sweetcorn tangy salad and tomato puree chillies,” she said.