South Africa Policy, Plans and Priorities

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South Africa

  1. Policy, Plans and Priorities

Medium Term Strategic Framework: A Framework To Guide Government’s Programme In The Electoral Mandate Period (2009 – 2014) July 2009 identifies the creation of decent work as the primary objective of South Africa’s economic policy.

The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) Medium Term Strategic Framework (MTSF) 2011-14 Vol. 1 and 2 states that among its objectives are:the dti will strengthen trade and investment engagements at the bilateral level, as well as advance the integration project in the Southern African Customs Union (SACU) and consolidate gains made under the Southern African Development Community (SADC) Free Trade Agreements (FTA). The Department will also expand its focus on extending regional markets in Africa by pursuing the SADC-East African Community (EAC)-Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) Tripartite FTA.
In recognition of the growing economies in the South, the dti will build on ongoing economic and trade cooperation efforts with Brazil, Russia, India and China through its membership of BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa).

Industrial Policy Action Plan 2010/11-2012/13 Feb 2010 (IPAP 2) is a three year rolling plan, to be updated annually and with a 10-year outlook on desired economic outcomes. IPAP 2 identifies activities to unlock potential in priority sectors, and as it achieves these objectives, the focus will move to the next set of sectors and interventions. A critical element of IPAP 2 is the implementation of financial support, including the Automotive Production and Development Programme, Clothing and Textile Production Incentive, Enterprise Investment Programme (EIP) and other schemes, while strengthening the performance, monitoring and evaluation of these schemes.


2012/13 – 14/15
The Industrial Policy Action Plan 2012/13 – 14/15 is continuation of the IPAP2. Therefore, successive iterations of IPAP seek to scale up key interventions over a rolling three-year period, with a 10-year outlook on desired economic outcomes. It provides an opportunity to take stock of the progress made and challenges experienced since the commencement of the first IPAP in 2008. The plan envisages to upscale efforts in sectors such as the green industries, agro-processing, maetal fabrication, capital equipment and transport equipment.

New Growth Path
The Government released the framework of the New Economic Growth Path at the end of 2010 presenting to the public a policy aimed at enhancing growth, employment creation and equity. The policy’s principal target is to create five million jobs over the next ten years. The centrepiece of the new growth path is a massive investment in infrastructure and people through skills development, together with smart government and better coordination with the private sector and organised labour in order to achieve national goals.
Areas of priority are:

  • Infrastructure development

  • Development of the Green Economy

  • Intervention in the agricultural sector

  • In the mining sector to increase extraction and beneficiation

  • The re-industrialisation of South Africa by improving manufacturing performance

  • The employment potential of the tourism sector and other high-level services

  1. Investment Promotion


WTO Trade Policy Review SACU South Africa 2009 Annex 4 South Africa states “The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) is responsible for formulating and coordinating the country's trade and industrial policies. However, other departments and agencies also take important initiatives on trade and investment policy, such as the Departments of Finance, Agriculture, Health, and Mineral and Energy Affairs, as well as the South African Reserve Bank. The private sector is quite instrumental in forwarding proposals and recommendations to the DTI, through for example, the National Economic Development and Labour Council (NEDLAC), the International Trade Administration Commission (ITAC), which replaced the Board on Tariffs and Trade (BTT), and the Industrial Development Corporation (IDC). The IDC and Parliamentary Committees continue to play a key role in assisting the DTI in carrying out periodic reviews and assessments of trade policies.”

DTI: Strategic Objectives of DTI

  • Facilitate transformation of the economy to promote industrial development, investment, competitiveness and employment creation.

• Build mutually benefi cial regional and global relations to advance South Africa’s trade, industrial policy and economic development objectives.

• Facilitate broad-based economic participation through targeted interventions to achieve more inclusive growth.

• Create a fair regulatory environment that enables investment, trade and enterprise development in an equitable and socially responsible manner.

• Promote a professional, ethical, dynamic, competitive and customer-focused working environment that ensures effective and efficient service delivery.

  1. Promoting the co-ordinated and accelerated implementation of the Government’s economic vision and priorities;

  2. Promoting direct investment and growth in the industrial and services economy, with particular focus on employment creation;

  1. Raising the level of exports and promoting equitable global trade;

  2. Promoting broader participation, equity and redress in the economy; and

  3. Contributing to Africa’s development and regional integration within the New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD).

The DTI website provides access to a comprehensive range of documents, information and application forms relating to investment, trade and doing business in South Africa.

ITED: International Trade and Economic Division is a division of DTI that is responsible for economic and trade relations, managing tariff regimes, investment treaties and promoting regional integration through SADC and SACU.

TISA: Trade and Investment South Africa (TISA) is a division of DTI with three business units, Investment Promotion and Facilitation, Export Development and Promotion and International Operations. TISA is responsible for increasing and retaining the level of foreign and domestic direct investment, increasing South Africa's capability and capacity to promote exports into targeted markets and managing DTI’s network of foreign offices.

Provincial IPA: Eastern Cape Development Corporation, Free State Development Corporation, Gauteng Economic Development Agency, Trade and Investment KwaZulu-Natal, Trade and Investment Limpopo, Mpumalanga Economic Growth Agency, Investing in the Northern Cape, Invest North West, Western Cape Investment and Trade Promotion Agency. The role of these agencies is to stimulate economic growth in a province through exports by established business and attracting foreign investment through building an enabling environment. TISA is working to coordinate national and provincial investment promotion activities.

IDC: Industrial Development Act, No. 22 of 1940 constitutes the Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) to promote the establishment of new industries and industrial undertakings, as well as the development of existing industries and industrial undertakings. IDC provides equity, quasi-equity and medium term loan finance to the private sector to promote industrial development and innovation.

DBSA: Development Bank of Southern Africa provides policy advice, planning, programming and financing for infrastructure provision. It cooperates with the private financial sector in support of local authority infrastructure needs, also promoting public private partnerships.

The Department of Tourism aims to fulfill the national government's role towards creating the conditions for responsible tourism growth and development by promoting and developing tourism, thereby increasing job and entrepreneurial opportunities and encouraging the meaningful participation of previously disadvantaged individuals. The focus will be on facilitating the growth of the tourism industry by providing support to the public and private sectors, and the broader community. There are also provincial tourism promotion authorities.

TISA’s Investment Promotion and Facilitation responsibilities include:

  1. Identifying investment opportunities in South Africa

  2. Packaging investment opportunities

  3. Identifying potential investors

  4. Promoting investment opportunities

  5. Facilitating investment into and in South Africa

  6. Providing a dedicated after-care service

  7. Providing general information on investing in South Africa and the domestic business environment

  1. Arranging inward and outward investment missions

  2. Facilitating funding and government support

Over the next three years the focus of the Investment Promotion Unit in TISA is on priority areas for attracting investment set out in IPAP 2, IPAP 2013/14 – 14/15 and the New Growth Path. These include Advanced Manufacturing, Manufacturing, Resource Industries, the Green Economy and the Services sectors.
The Investment Promotion Unit seeks investment with best multiplier effects in terms of:

  1. Potential for Job Creation;

  2. Economic development and geographic spread;

  3. Support for the creation of other local industries and empowerment;

  4. Unlocking competition;

  5. Technology transfer, innovation and skills development; and

  6. Environmentally-friendly industries.

China, India, Russia, Brazil, Japan, USA, Europe and the Middle East are targets for seeking investors.

TISA is coordinating and strengthening networks with Provincial and Local IPAs and activities include:

  1. Promotion of investment opportunities;

  2. Marketing of investment projects;

  3. Information on investment sectors and industries;

  4. Facilitation of investment missions, including travel itineraries;

  5. Introduction of key stakeholders in private and public sectors;

  6. Introduction to potential joint venture partners and BEE partnerships;

  7. Consultation on regulatory environment;

  8. Incentive packages;

  9. Plant location and Industrial Development Zones;

  10. Work permit applications;

  11. Relocation support;

  12. After-care service.

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