At its ordinary meeting on Wednesday, 19 October 2016, the Free State Executive Council (EXCO), adopted a comprehensive radical economic transformation programme which will run until 2019, when the term of office of the current administration comes to an end.
The executive council resolved that Free State Premier, Hon. Ace Magashule, shall be tasked to lead the EXCO’s Economic Sectors, Employment and Infrastructure Cluster to drive this radical economic transformation agenda.
The executive council noted positive strides made since 1994 in the transformation of the economy. The executive council further noted the slow progress made in certain strategic areas, particularly land, economy and employment creation.
The Free State radical economic transformation programme, which was developed with inputs from various stakeholders, including business, has come up with prescriptive measures that would seek to radically transform the economy of the Free State to be rid of Apartheid characteristics.
The following are some of the resolutions that form part of the Free State Radical Economic Transformation Programme:
The Free State government shall lobby for the review of the State Land Lease and Disposal Policy to ensure that it is more biased towards historically disadvantaged individuals and businesses.
State assets and property
Following an extensive audit of all properties owned by the state, e.g. unused factories in Botshabelo, and municipal facilities like parks, as well as other state assets, the Free State government will ensure that such entities are used for the radical empowerment of black businesses. Interventions like incentives for black business are to be used to realize this objective.
The executive council resolved that conditional grant like Municipal Infrastructure Grant (MIG) should be used to address socio-economic challenges faced by our people. More specifically, the executive council agreed that MIG projects should prioritise local businesses, youth, women and people with disabilities.
Youth Trade Fair
The Free State Provincial government shall host a youth trade fair in order to inspire and support youth entrepreneurs to network as well as to enhance youth employment. Development Finance Institutions will be engaged to support youth entrepreneurship.
Creation of the Free State Black Business Council
The Free State provincial government shall facilitate the establishment of a Black Business Council for the province. The council shall be a platform for black businesses to network, share ideas and best practices and find ways to exploit the Free State value chain.
The Free State executive council shall continuously monitor the implementation of this radical economic transformation programme to ensure that it responds to the material conditions on the ground.
Source: Government of South Africa.