Thursday, 26 November 2015

Letter to Business Day - Minister needs to re-enter debate

Business Day has published my letter today calling on Minister Lindiwe Zulu to re-enter the debate on labour reform, among other things.

You can read here at BDLive or in full below:

Dear Sir

For Minister Lindiwe Zulu to earn the moniker “driver of change” (Drivers of change must pull together to restart economy, Peter Attard Montalto, 24 November) she first needs to do the following:

1.      Re-enter the debate on labour reform. Shortly after her appointment as Small Business Minister she made some sensible comments about how business was put off hiring because of restrictive labour legislation. After Cosatu took her out at the knees, she has not ventured into that territory again.
2.      Related to this, she should support Herman Mashaba’s bid to have the Constitutional Court reform Section 32 of the Labour Relations Act which mandates the Minister of Labour to extend agreements concluded by sector bargaining councils to non-parties to these agreements.
3.      Advocate tax and regulatory reforms to allow small  businesses to focus on growth rather than grapple with burdensome and punitive red tape and disincentives.

Once she does these things, she will be better positioned to engage SA's business community in a much needed collaborative spirit. She can then have a constructive conversation around persuading business of the benefits of supply chain transformation, aimed at building more robust small and medium enterprises through diffusing industry and general business knowledge while improving procurement efficiencies.

This will also address two key issues: providing small and growing businesses with improved access to markets, as well as access to affordable and tailored financial solutions. This would be a commercially sensible path towards an inclusive economy and for redressing the pernicious legacy of apartheid.

The DA is ready and willing to work with Minister Zulu to find solutions that break the deadlock in our political economy. This entails overcoming the obstacles which impede small businesses and aspiring workers. This should be her first priority and an objective with much potential to inspire cooperation.


Toby Chance
Shadow Minister of Small Business Development

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