Freedom Front Plus
Freedom Front Plus

Small business: Government is choking the life out of backbone of economy

(Debate in parliament: Adjustment Budget for Department of Small Business Development)

Small business enterprises are the backbone of South Africa's economy. And yet the ANC government is choking the life out of this sector. Restrictive legislation, policy uncertainty and incompetence make it more and more difficult for entrepreneurs to start and build businesses.

The government cannot sustainably keep creating jobs and it can also not keep providing for the millions who are dependent on government grants. And the number of people who are dependent on the government is increasing every day because of the economic crisis, which results in job losses.

That is why every single small business enterprise is significant. These enterprises create jobs, expand the tax base and stimulate economic growth. Every one of these enterprises that is forced to close its doors brings with it a loss of jobs and economic decline.

South Africa is number 84 on a list of countries worldwide which indicates how easy it is to run a business enterprise in that country and our situation is getting worse by the day. Structural changes are needed. Without such changes, the Covid-19 emergency relief fund is useless.

To ensure that these changes have an effect post Covid-19, the Department must start to work on plans that include interdepartmental reform programmes now already.

It is fairly easy to register a new enterprise with the Companies and Intellectual Property Commission (CIPC), but the other statutory processes, like licensing and the compulsory registration processes for UIF, municipal trade licences, taxes and VAT are all encumbered by red tape and incompetence, which often makes it impossible.

The other problem with the Covid-19 emergency relief fund is that it discriminates based on race. The virus and hunger do not discriminate.

Many business enterprises had no choice but to close down due to the impact of the government's irrational lockdown regulations. When the economy is forced to close, like it is now, aid must be provided to all businesses that are affected. It is senseless to try and save lives on the one hand while destroying people's future on the other.

It is short-sighted to exclude business owners from Covid-19 aid just because they belong to a certain race as all South Africans of all races suffer a loss when a business closes, regardless of the skin colour of the owner of that business. It is a crying shame.

In this context, the Development of Small Business Development really means very little. The Department is not helping these business enterprises to stay in business.

The ANC government is destroying South Africa's economy. The past is not to blame for all inequality. The ANC is to blame due to its wrong priorities, poor service delivery, failing infrastructure and corruption that give rise to poverty, unemployment and inequality.

The ANC wants to keep the poor dependent on the government purely for political gain. Thus, the virus called the ANC is responsible for the country's economic decline and its empty state coffers.

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