DA presents its new manufacturing rescue plan
7 Aug 2018 - by
The Democratic Alliance (DA), released its own rescue plan for South Africa’s manufacturing sector yesterday.
According to DA shadow minister of Trade and Industry, Dean Macpherson, the plan was created following a meeting with manufacturing industry players and in response to the continued decline of the manufacturing sector and related job losses.
“Manufacturers at the meeting pointed out that policy uncertainty, a restrictive regulatory environment, an inflexible labour market and a populist drive to expropriate land without compensation were drying up the investment sector,” he said.
“The effect of all these factors means that jobs have been lost and the sector’s ability to create jobs is crippled.”
Additionally, manufacturers are currently faced with cost escalations resulting from the sugar tax, waste management tax and the potential carbon tax as well as a“slow” response by the Department of Trade and Industry to protect local industry from highly subsidised imports.
The DA’s rescue plan includes the launch of a Red Tape Impact Assessment Bill aimed at assessing legislation in order to reduce regulatory burdens on small businesses.
It also aims to remove policies such as the Promotion of Investment Act and the Mining Charter to protect foreign investors’ rights and promote investment.
In addition, it proposes easier access for foreign workers to attain visas in South Africa, the use of renewable energy for manufacturers to reduce energy costs, and a review of tariffs on imported steel to keep prices competitive for local suppliers and to build the competitive downstream sector.
Macpherson said that the DA would advocate for the unfreezing of the budget for the Manufacturing Enhancement Programme, along with lowering corporate tax for manufacturers to 15% conditional on reinvestment in capacity to expand production, skills training and corporate social investment.