3.2 BILLION RAND SPENT ON HELPING 200,000 SMALL BUSINESSES IN SOUTH AFRICA

The South African Small Enterprise Finance Agency (Sefa) has so far distributed more than 3.2 billion Rand (about 213 million US dollars) to more than 200,000 small businesses, says Minister of Small Business Development Lindiwe Zulu.

For the financial year 2015/16 alone, Sefa approved 1.1 billion Rand in loan facilities and disbursed 1.08 billion Rand to 45,263 small, medium and mcro enterprises (SMMEs) and co-operatives through its various loan distribution channels, she said when tabling here department’s Budget vote in Parliament here Thursday.

At least 61 youth-owned enterprises have been funded to the tune of 17.9 million Rand through the Co-operatives Incentive Scheme, while 35.9 million Rand had gone to 117 women enterprises. A total of 45.2 million Rand had been disbursed to fund 325 women-owned enterprises through the Black Business Support Development Programme.

“We will be monitoring these initiatives through appropriate monitoring and evaluation mechanisms,” Zulu said.

She said during the 2015/16 fiscal year, 249 women, spread across all nine provinces, received a month-long, formal training programme through the Bavumile Skills Development Programme, which is designed to increase their expertise in production processes in the creative and craft markets.

The department has also entered into a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Government of the Netherlands to promote co-operation in the area of co-operatives development.

One of the focus areas is to provide technical assistance with regard to the structuring of co-operative models that will improve production efficiencies and economic viability within co-operatives.

SOURCE: NAM NEWS NETWORK