Small Business Department just a loud mouth, says economist

Economist and Eskom Business Investment Competition adjudicator Xanti Payi lashes out at the Department of Small Business Development. Photo: Sipho Siso


The Department of Small Business Development is nothing but a big mouth that has nothing to show to justify its creation and existence.

This according to economist and Eskom’s Business Investment Competition adjudicator, Xanti Payi, who made this allegation when asked about the role of the department in ensuring the success and sustenance of the small business community.

Speaking during a roundtable media discussion at the Grounded Media offices in Wellington Street, Parktown, Payi said he found it ‘very difficult to justify the continued existence of the department as it has done nothing for small business people’.

“The one thing they know and do best is brag about grand plans that are never implemented, and continue to make pronouncements and have talk shows instead of delivering a tangible project, ideas and activities that uplift this sector of our economy,” Payi argued.

He said the small business sector is the driver of economic growth and job creation in the economy, without which this economy would be growing in the manner it has done over the past few years. “We need to jack up the department and ensure that talk shows and pronouncements are transformed into real action and tangible projects so that we can continue on a growth path for the benefit of the ordinary men and women in the streets.”

He said small businesses should be linked with value chains to provide certain services and establish them as a pool of service providers ready to jump into big projects as partners in the provision of niche services.

He also accused big business of failing to come to the party to ensure the sustenance of small business people and their projects. The private sector too has a big role to play in helping sustain and grow small businesses and also develop much-needed skills in the economy, he said.

The Department of Small Business Development has not responded with comment to numerous emails sent to Minister Lindiwe Zulu’s personal assistant, Judy Booysen.

Read: Street aerobics comes to the people of Alex

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Sipho Siso

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