President Cyril Ramaphosa has praised young entrepreneurs who have seized opportunities that contribute to the economy and alleviation of poverty during the Covid-19 pandemic.
“I am very pleased at the combination of foresight, creativity and business acumen displayed by a number of young South Africans who are coming up with home-grown solutions to the contemporary challenges we face,” Ramaphosa said in his weekly newsletter.
“Some have started small business ventures because of personal circumstances, like losing their jobs. Others who were previously unemployed have seized the opportunity provided by the pandemic to create their own incomes.”
He cited a number of businesses run by young people around the country, including a bicycle-based delivery service in Cape Town’s Langa township.
Cloudy Deliveries is run by a group of youth who use bicycles to ferry goods from shops to residents, especially the elderly who are discouraged from leaving their homes, for a fee.
“Then there is 28-year-old Election Xitsakiso Baloyi, from Mankweng in Limpopo, whose pizza-making hobby turned into a fully fledged business after his family started posting pictures of his creations on social media. With the lockdown preventing people from eating out, he got an avalanche of queries from community members asking if he was selling his pizzas.”
Ramaphosa noted that an increasing demand for personal protective equipment had seen a number of small businesses established to manufacture masks, visors and face shields to supply to businesses and communities.