Enterprises in the social economy sphere in South Africa will benefit from an agreement inked by the government and the Flanders government to stimulate growth in the sector.
Economic Development Minister Ebrahim Patel on Monday signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Government of Flanders, the Flemish-speaking part of Belgium, and the International Labour Organization (ILO) to help boost job creation in the social economy.
In South Africa, the social economy consists of institutions such as co-operatives, trade union investment bodies, social enterprises, non-profit institutions for research and advocacy groups, among others.
A partnership like this offers promise for young people in South Africa, for the rural, excluded (population) and for the urban poor, and that is why we wanted to embrace this opportunity of a partnership, Patel said during the signing of the MoU.
Also present were the Government of Flanders General-Representative, Dr Geraldine Reymenants. and the ILO Director for Decent Work Team for Eastern and Southern Africa, Dr Joni Toko Musabayana.
Under the MoU, the Government of Flanders has committed about 19 million Rand (about 1.4 million US dollars), while the South African government will contribute about 5.0 million Rand towards the initiative, which is aimed at creating and supporting decent jobs in a sustainable and inclusive social economy.
The ILO will provide technical support to South Africa's Economic Development Department in the implementation of this project.
Patel described the MoU as a partnership bringing together four key ingredients -- resources; technical expertise; information and knowledge; as well as co-ordination.
Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK