Editors Note, 2019-03 Edition
September 4, 2019
Good News Stories, 2019-03 Edition
September 4, 2019

Letter from Les, 2019-03 Edition

This issue focuses on some key sectors, and certainly sectors that are NOT receiving the attention they ought to and which continue to be lip service to many, including our respective Government departments, established to, Legislate, Evaluate and promote growth and development. Certainly if we as society deem these sectors to have huge potential for Economic and Job Growth / creation, let us not spend so much time and energy stifling them but rather unlock what is the real potential.

TOURISM
If Government claim a realistic potential of seven jobs for every tourist, why is our unemployment increasing? The harsh reality is 7:1 is not realistic and whilst authorities fail to investigate and correct what is holding our growth back, it is going to be a target that stays beyond our reach. Immediately what comes to mind are those areas most easily achievable and recognised as obstacles, viz, regulations and infrastructure? Hypothetically were our immigration less stringent our tourism would double overnight. Certainly we are not advocating the removal of, but more realistically the relaxation of laws that currently discourage visitors to SA, laws aligned to those of first world countries such as Spain, UK, Netherlands etc. We do acknowledge the need to manage illegal immigrants, however stricter application and stronger enforcement of those laws would alleviate that growing problem.

Additionally, whilst insufficient attention to welcoming infrastructure continues, our Region will continue to play catch – up to proactive Cities and Provinces such as Cape Town and Durban. What comes immediately to mind is facilities to welcome visitors, not least who arrive by, boat, plane, bus or train.

RENEWABLE ENERGY
It is a protected reason why authorities have failed to approve enabling environment that potentially would unlock many answers and solutions to our energy crises, particularly as Load Shedding remains a spectre on our horizons!

Key initiatives such as Bio Fuel have been driven underground and hardly surprising that the only bio fuel plant in our region is a private initiative. Despite large amounts of effort and an unlimited market for bio-fuel, resources being channelled into this sector, show little return, with legislation that continues to hinder progress.

Other growing industries include recycling and whist this sector is a fledgling, the recent Presidential “Good Clean / Green” initiative has accelerated greater interest in the real value of recycling. Chambers own Call-2-Action Project accelerated this real value wave and initiatives such as the Buy-Back-Centre and the Schools Programme give a glimpse of how we have been wasting real opportunities.

In closing Chamber bid a sad farewell to two members of our team, Jacqui Austin (Membership & Events) and Alana Velida (Administration). We do, however, welcome Zintle Quntu and Yanga Ziwele, to fill-up in these two positions.

We hope you enjoy this new edition.

Warmest regards
LES HOLBROOK,
Executive Director