A presentation to the parliamentary portfolio committee on small business development revealed that 80% of all government departments failed to pay small, medium, and micro enterprises (SMMEs) for services rendered within 30 days. This amounted to a staggering R30 billion in the 2020/21 financial year.
The failure rate of South African small businesses is one the worst globally, with an estimated 75% of our SMMEs failing after operating for only three years.
In his State of the Nation Address (SONA), President Cyril Ramaphosa stated that government doesn’t create jobs. In fact, the ANC government’s failure to pay is killing jobs in South Africa, affecting people’s dignity and causing community instability.
Since the creation of the Department of Small Business Development in 2014, there have been three ministers – none of which were worth their salt. Hence the DA motion of no confidence in the cabinet.
The ANC government have proven time and again that they do not truly care about small businesses, like the time they killed the Ombudsman Private Members Bill tabled by the DA in the 5th parliament, which would have assisted SMMEs regarding the 30-day payment rule.
The DA will submit written parliamentary questions to all ministers regarding their departments’ age analysis. We will do everything in our power to make sure that every legitimate invoice from SMMEs gets paid within 30 days.
We have also launched an online platform where SMMEs can report non-compliance to pay within 30 days.
The DA will not allow the ANC government to kill SMMEs. We will continue to implement strategies to ease the environment in which they must operate. SMMEs is an important vehicle to economic recovery and must be nurtured.