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MITI street markets to grow local produce uptake

Publishing Date : 09 July, 2018

Author : REARABILWE RAMAPHANE

The Ministry of Investment, Trade & Industry (MITI)’s Market street days will go a long way in advancing entrepreneurship development in the country, MITI Minister Bogolo Kenewendo has said.  The ministry will, starting today (Saturday), host a series of events called Market Street Days country wide to showcase locally produced goods.


“The intention is to expose our manufactures and producers to potential consumers, this coupled with other initiatives like the EDD will develop our manufactures and good producers to the standards required for international market windows such as AGOA,” Kenewendo said.
Kenewendo noted that at these street markets, producers will appreciate exactly what consumers are looking for as there will be first hand face to face dialogue. “Once our producers appreciate where they can improve, they will do exactly that and in due course we will have export ready commodities for uptake by both local and global market,” she said


According to information from the Ministry, the objective of the Market Street Day is to among others, showcase locally-manufactured products and to bring together producers and retailers together. The event will also present a networking platform for businesses to share knowledge and ideas with a view to expanding their market base.


The Market streets kick-starts a series of undertakings by the ministry which last week outlined a new road map anchored around three mandated deliveries. One of the apexes under the ministry’s new blueprint is SMME development. Minister Kenewendo underscored recently that her ministry takes Small Micro & Medium Enterprises sector seriously as a key economic vehicle that creates jobs and income for many ordinary Batswana hence the SMME Development as Apex number 1.


Furthermore to continue facilitating SMMEs growth Honorable Kenewendo highlighted that her ministry will develop a supplier directory by sector and region. She explained that this will facilitate stakeholders such as business community and local authorities to have access to service providers within their jurisdiction.


Taking into account Botswana’s population of just over 2 million which is often considered too small for business, the country’s focus is now in taking advantage of its Southern African Central location and inter-border trade arrangements to penetrate the over 500 million people SADC market and consequently the continental consumer space. To create the much needed jobs, Botswana observes the need for mass industrialization outputting competitive goods and export ready products that can be absorbed by the international market.  


Permanent Secretary in the ministry, Peggy Serame noted that the Market Street days, which provide a platform for views exchange and business dialogue could in turn even reduce the country’s import bill. “We are exposing our local produce and citizen manufactured products to potential traders and dealers because the market streets are taking place at strategic areas where the public can easily access and potential business partners can also indulge,” she , adding that it has been observed that Botswana continued to import some goods while they were available locally. “This is also what we are trying to address now through this platform. Participants in the trade and retail value chain would know what is available locally and ready for market uptake.”


 She underscored that her Ministry will explore export-led growth by promoting export of goods for which the country has a comparative advantage.  “Under the new road map the Export Development basket will encompass creation of market access through negotiation of trade agreements with strategic partners, identify priority sectors according to export readiness and capacity as well as implement rigorous development strategies of export incentives.” MITI also intends to robustly combat regulatory impediments for SMMEs and local manufactures.

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