Sona: Cyril Ramaphosa announces R10bn fund for SA's women

President Cyril Ramaphosa during his state of the nation address in the National Assembly, Cape Town, on February 13 2020.
President Cyril Ramaphosa during his state of the nation address in the National Assembly, Cape Town, on February 13 2020.

The Industrial Development Corporation will, in the next five years, fund women-owned businesses to the tune of R10bn.

This was announced on Thursday night by President Cyril Ramaphosa as he delivered his state of the nation address in parliament.

“The empowerment of women is critical to inclusive economic growth. We are introducing the ‘SheTradesZA’ platform to assist women-owned businesses to participate in global value chains and markets," said Ramaphosa.

“Over the next five years, the Industrial Development Corporation is targeting R10bn of own and partner funding for women empowered businesses,” he added.

His announcement was among the intervention aimed at bolstering small and medium enterprises owned by the youth and women.

“To create a larger market for small businesses, we plan to designate 1,000 locally produced products that must be procured from SMMEs [small, macro and medium-sized enterprises],” said Ramaphosa.

He said his government would also be tabling in parliament a proposed piece of law to advance radical economic transformation.

"The Procurement Bill will soon be presented to parliament as part of our efforts to empower black and emerging businesses and advance radical economic transformation," he said.

Ramaphosa said his administration would intensify its investment drive by establishing an integrated investment promotion and facilitation capability coordinated from the Presidency.

“We will hold our third South Africa Investment Conference in November to review the implementation of previous commitments and to generate new investment into our economy,” said Ramaphosa.

The president said his government was already seeing results of the investment pledges made at the last two investment conferences where business leaders pledged to invest R664bn in South Africa.

“Already, projects with an investment value of R9bn have been completed and 27 projects worth just over R250bn are in implementation phase, with more coming on-stream this year,” said Ramaphosa.

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