It is of general consent that the small business sector is the pillar to many emerging economies and will contribute massively to their Gross Domestic Product (GDP) especially in Africa. And it is then important to begin to deal with whatever barriers will hinder SMMEs and entrepreneurs’ access to market.
South Africa and some other African countries have started on a journey and increasingly recognising the importance of the small enterprise sector and their role in the economy.
It is then very crucial to make sure that the involvement of small enterprise sector must grow and increase especially when we look at its market share and overall contribution to the GDP presently.
The 67CEOs Global Entrepreneurship Week (GEW19) themed “Advancing Market Access” emphasised that for small businesses to be able to succeed, access to market is key, and the support should come from both private and public sectors forming a strong collaboration. There is the need for a structured economic framework that will see all stakeholders participating and contributing to making sure small enterprises participation in the market increases exponentially.
The GM of Ford Motor Company of South Africa Neil Hill mentioned that they as a company have taken the initiative to broaden their supply base in order to get the 67% target of local content. He said there is a huge opportunity for entrepreneurs and SMMEs because they fall within the Tier 2-4 supplier which is the supply base they want to see grow. The small enterprises need to get informed and identify how they can get into the supply chain and procurement of big private sectors like themselves; how they can deliver their local goods and services that can feed into the industry and help with the growth they want to see, he added.
A structured economic framework is a crucial factor, and this should be a deliberate effort by government and private sector where we see an increase in the participation of SMMEs and entrepreneurs in the economy by plugging them into the value chain where they can also feed into the production process.