By Ntokozo Nkambule
The Minister of Commerce Industry & Trade, Manqoba Khumalo has disclosed that he anticipates that the Citizens & Economic Empowerment Bill will be passed by next week.
The Minister said the passing of the Bill is instrumental to the success of Micro Small & Medium Enterprises MSMEs.
“The Bill defines and outlines incentives provided by the government strictly for MSMEs. The Bill also seeks to make it easier for MSMEs in the country to start a business, make money and become sustainable. Furthermore, the Bill has a provision for certain businesses that should be preserved for MSMEs.
The Minister was speaking during this year’s celebration of World MSME Day which was held at Mountain View.
The event was held in partnership with the International Trade Centre, the European Union, and the Ministry of Commerce Industry and Trade.
European Union’s chargé d’affaires Robert Adam in his address highlighted the importance of MSMEs in the country.
“In Eswatini there are more than 60 000 MSMEs, employing 93 000 people which is clear evidence of the importance of MSMEs in the country.”
He continued “Through our collaboration with Eswatini, the EU brings to Eswatini all ITC’s expertise. As a result, Eswatini can leverage the EU-SADC Economic Partnership Agreement, and the African Continental Free Trade Area Agreement as the ITC is deeply involved in its implementation.”
Also present during the event was the Federation of the Swaziland Business Community (FESBC) Chief Executive Officer, Tanya Fyfe, Business Eswatini’s Relationship Manager, Mbuso Sacolo who spoke on behalf of Nathie Dlamini, the CEO of BE.
The commemoration of today’s event also saw the launch of a book titled “Discover Eswatini: Tales of Creativity, Sustainability and Empowerment” which is funded by the EU and features stories of local MSMEs.