South Africa

Ramaphosa praises R261 billion support for Black-owned companies

South African President Cyril Ramaphosa said pledges to procure goods and services from Black-owned companies worth R261 billion would spur transformation in the economy.

“We are seeing real support from established businesses for black industrialists. This helps to build an ecosystem of suppliers, creating more dynamism in the market,” Ramaphosa told a conference in Johannesburg on Wednesday.

The promises cover procurement plans over the next five years.

Facing elections on 29 May in which his ruling ANC risks losing its majority for the first time since 1994, Ramaphosa must show he’s taking steps to support Black businesses in a nation blighted by racial inequality and high unemployment.

The largest pledge came from the retail, clothing and footwear sector — a key South African employer in the country — which pledged R80 billion.

“The whole economy, in the end, benefits from the growth of black-owned businesses,” Ramaphosa said.

“This will go a really long way in fostering economic inclusion and transforming our economy.”


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