KwaZulu-Natal’s Economic Council is calling social partners to make a contribution to ensuring that growth is realised and citizens get jobs, this is according to Sthembiso Madlala, Member of Civil Society, KwaZulu-Natal.
“The economic council was created to get a collection vision for all relevant social partners and also ensuring that no one is left behind,” he added.
He called for unity among stakeholders adding this was integral to the success of the province’s agenda for growth.
KwaZulu-Natal is South Africa's second largest economy, contributing on average, 16 per cent (2013) to the country's GDP. The province is home to two of Africa’s busiest and largest ports, Durban and Richards Bay.
KwaZulu-Natal also boasts of being the third highest export propensity and the second highest level of industrialisation in the country.
“We need to embrace each other as social partners, ensure that all social partners and stakeholders are contributing towards building a thriving economy in KwaZulu-Natal,” Madlala said.
“Our first point of entry is ensuring that smaller and medium enterprises are getting enough support.”
He also added that his network was working to address bottlenecks, bureaucracy, access to land and cumbersome process in accessing money.
“The issue of land in KwaZulu-Natal is a serious challenge, the impact is felt more when it comes to building special economic zones as this requires buy-in from other interest groups,” he said.
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Madlala said there was need for political stability if the region is to lure investors.
“As civil society we are also working to ensure there is political stability as there no investor will come into a country without political stability,” he warned.
“We need to hold the government and the civil society accountable so as to ensure that the province meets targets.”