In our response to President Zuma`s State of the Nation Speech last week, SACTWU issued a press release which stated the following:
"The COSATU-affiliated Southern African Clothing and Textile Workers` Union (SACTWU) has noted the President’s statements in his State of the Nation speech that "…industrial policy will build labour absorbing industries…", that the broad policy direction outlined in his address will be practically detailed in implementation strategies to be announced by the responsible Ministries, that Ministers will be required to sign target performance agreements and that 2010 will be a year of action.
We welcome this.
We now look forward to the details and call for increased resources to be allocated for industrial policy implementation measures to build labour absorbing industries, such as clothing and textiles, by the various responsible ministries, in particular by the Minister of Finance in his budget speech next week."
We now notice that, in his Budget Speech of today, the Minister of Finance, Mr Pravin Gordhan, has announced the following:
"An additional R3.6 billion is allocated to the Department of Trade and Industry for industrial policy interventions consistent with government’s new Industrial Policy Action Plan. In particular, these funds go to support investment and production in the automotive components and clothing and textile industries."
We are aware of the national resource constraints and in this context welcome this specific additional allocation. We now look forward to working with the DTI on the details of how this additional allocation is to be spread amongst and spent in the identified sectors as rapidly and as efficiently as possible.
In addition, we look forward to hear what other Ministries have to say about how their specific departments can support labour absorbing industries such as clothing, textiles and leather.