Industrial Policy Action Plan: State Of The Manufacturing Sector hearings

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Trade, Industry and Competition

30 October 2012
Chairperson: Ms J Fubbs (ANC)
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Meeting Summary

The Committee heard presentations from the Manufacturing Circle, Competition Commission and the
Department of Trade and Industry on the state of the manufacturing sector

The Manufacturing Circle submitted that manufacturing employed 1.7m people and accounted for 15% of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) but had lost 300 000 jobs because of the recession. Electricity costs over the last five years had increased 170%. In comparison, other BRICS countries were experiencing decreases, with Brazil’s being anticipated to decrease by 28% in 2013.

The sector was stagnant and imports had increased resulting in an entrenched trade deficit. The Purchasing Managers Index was at a three year low. The rand exchange rate was volatile making it difficult to plan investments for business.

Municipal electricity charges did not reflect the Eskom’s price increases and required urgent attention. The Manufacturers Circle proposed a longer term and more gradual cost increase trajectory. This could be achieved by enabling the National Energy Regulator of South Africa (NERSA) to interrogate Eskom price increases and it proposed that electricity discounts be considered as an interim measure to allow manufacturers to adjust. Control needed to be exercised over municipal electricity price increases; there needed to be a fiscal review on how public infrastructure was funded; the capacity and resources of independent regulators be improved and that benchmarking analysis be undertaken.

Local procurement should be strengthened and there was a need for a strong buy local campaign through a joint statement by all stake holders and that it be followed up with a broader advertising campaign.

There had been positive feedback from members of the Circle on the various manufacturing incentives, but there had not been any successful application by manufacturers to the jobs fund.

Members said that South Africa was exporting steel to China, yet Cape Gate steel manufacturers were competing with cheap Chinese steel imports suspected of being subsidised Was there evidence of countervailing subsidies? How did the Circle interact with Kumba Iron Ore Limited as Kumba would rather sell its raw material than beneficiate it? Industry need to bring to the attention of the National Regulator for Compulsory Specifications (NRCS) any low quality imports, so that it could be blocked. Why was the electricity price of BRICS countries decreasing? Members said there had to be factors which influenced Johannesburg and Tshwane to charge 700% above Eskom’s prices. Had the Department’s studies been updated? What were the competitive opportunities in recycling? What should be done concerning skills and technology development?

The Competition Commission said that active competitiveness in manufacturing was a function of manufacturing capability. The Commission was interested in the relationship between competition and industrial policy, especially the behaviour of big firms as the existence of many firms led to the development of competitiveness. Large firms or monopolies ‘owned’ their customers and spawned low levels of investment as there was no need to invest because there was no rivalry. The new Industrial Policy Action Plan (IPAP) did support the establishment of many firms. The Commission was doing work in the priority areas of food production, intermediate industrial products, construction and fuel. Regional dynamics was another matter as sometimes there were stronger value chains across countries with poultry being a case in point.

Members asked how legislated monopolies were shutting down the economy. Was it relevant that products be produced labour intensively? How had the steel issue arisen? Members asked for more comment on bid rigging. Was it being suggested that a limit be placed on plastic exports to China or what other proposals could the Commission advance?

The Department of Trade and Industry submitted that the bunched up escalation in electricity price increases posed a serious danger to the viability of the manufacturing sector. The global recession had led to 200 000 to 300 000 jobs being lost and the structure of the economy had to shift to energy efficiency and greater competitiveness, but a loss of capacity in key sectors for example in foundries could have a knock on effect.

There had been an emphasis on the supply side and Eskom’s build programme had led to Multi Year Price Determinations of 27%, with municipal customers being subjected to tariff loading leading to triple digit non-tariff surcharges. There was no single tariff, with significant differences existing between municipalities and tariffs were allegedly not in line with NERSA guidelines. Some municipalities appeared to be using electricity tariffs to generate revenue. The most vulnerable sectors were chemicals, plastics, metal foundries and glass.
The Department recommended that an intra-governmental task team examine the impact of escalating electricity tariff increases; short term measures be applied to vulnerable sectors; there was a need for one national set of tariffs; there should be single digit price increases; carbon taxes be approached with caution in the current climate; and companies be supported in recapitalising with energy efficient technologies.

The Department had commissioned research into the impact and policy applications of escalating electricity prices and changing energy mix in South Africa.

Members said something radical needed to be done or IPAP would become a welfare system for failed businesses. Members said the big problem was the ridiculous surcharges by municipalities. Members said that Eskom was not to blame and that the problem lay with the municipalities. Had the Department held meetings with the South African Local Government Association (SALGA) on IPAP? What difference would utilising shale gas reserves make on the cost of electricity? Members said that Government as Eskom’s shareholder was not taking control to ensure that there was no double digit increases. What were the challenges to implementing policy? Members said that compartmentalisation should not be allowed to prevent the solving of a problem. The Department had to interact with municipalities through inter-governmental structures on their electricity tariffs.

The Department said the production of cars had been seriously affected by the recession. Exports to the European Union remained negatively affected. The Automotive Investment Scheme had led to investments last year of R3.9 billion. Employment had been seriously affected with a 25% decrease in jobs in vehicle assembly. There had been an increase in import penetration. Passenger car penetration stood at 70%. The local content of cars was not significant.

Vision 2020 had been adopted and the Automotive Incentive Scheme (AIS) had replaced part of the Motor Industry Development Programme (MIDP). Implementation had taken place with R15 billion of cash grants, aligned to the World Trade Organisation (WTO) benefits for local value addition, given. A few firms, for example,
catalytic converter producers, had been affected by this and they would get special transitional arrangements.The International Trade Administration Commission (ITAC) / South African Revenue Service (SARS) guidelines would be coming out in the very near future.

Medium and Heavy Commercial Vehicles (MHCVs) had been designated and 80% of the body had to be assembled in South Africa, with the drive train and engines slated for later inclusion. It was extending investment support to encourage local production and it was extending production incentives and amending regulations for the assembly of semi knocked down vehicles. It was working with the Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) for the financing of trucks and buses but the market was small and therefore it was lobbying for better trade protocols regionally.

There was a need to look at regulatory changes for electric vehicles. Industrial support was given through the Automotive Production and Development Programme (APDP).

The Supplier Development Programme to 65 firms in assoication with the United Nations Industrial Development Organisation (UNIDO) was a competitive improvement initiative. It was developing a new frameworks for competitive improvement, targeting two value chains currently and it was forging links internationally, for example with Productivity Japan.

The APDP was a tool for growth in the industry but it was not enough as the rest of the APDP needed to be implemented.  Administrative issues needed to be investigated.

Members said the Eastern Cape had raised the issue of metal sheets for bus bodies. Would ArcelorMittal South Africa (AMSA) be able to provide that? Would the target of 80% local content for busies be achieved if AMSA could not give guarantees? Was there a programme to ensure skills development at universities and technikons? Were cars were being imported through Durban harbour or were they destined for neighboring countries?

The Department said the clothing and textiles sector accounted for 120 000 jobs and 11% of manufacturing employment. The sector had a turnover of R35 billion which was 2.8% of GDP and there were 2 000 active companies in the sector. While the production in clothing had declined, there had been an increase in the production of footwear. One of the challenges the sector faced were not so much the strength of the rand as its volatility, which created challenges from a planning perspective and dampened the enthusiasm to invest. Another was illegal imports and under invoicing. There was no succession plans regarding the sector education and skills gaps. The National Skills Fund had turned down their application for the funding of training. Foreign direct investment was not attractive for investors.

In the Clothing & Textiles Competitiveness Programme the Department had provided Competitiveness Improvement Programme (CIP) incentives totaling R283 million of which R36.5 million had been disbursed. The Production Improvement Programme (PIP) incentives of R501 million had been disbursed of a total of R637.5 million. Companies had seen the success resulting from participation in the scheme and 50 000 jobs had been saved with 19 000 occurring in the footwear industry. Over 12 000 jobs had been created with 6,600 created in the footwear industry. In addition major retailers were now confidently purchasing locally with Foschini purchasing 68% locally made goods and Edcon’s 45%.

Footwear purchases had increased, especially of protective footwear and programmes had been developed to decrease footwear imports and further increase footwear manufacture.

The Duty Credit Certificate Scheme (DCCS) had been discontinued and PIP had been promoted as its replacement in the long term. There were question marks over how it would be funded in the other regional countries but South Africa was self-funded.

The Southern African Customs Union (SACU)'s industrial policy was being pursued through a pilot hides and tanning project.

Members asked if the Department was looking to revive the cotton industry. Members said it appeared there was no role for co-operatives.

Meeting report

Manufacturing Circle: the Crisis and Opportunities in Manufacturing
Mr Bruce Strong, Mpact CEO, said that manufacturing employed 1.7 millon people and accounted for 15% of Gross Domestic Product (GDP). The challenge was that 300 000 jobs had been lost because of the recession. Electricity costs over the last five years had increased 170%. In comparison, other Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa (BRICS) group of countries were experiencing decreases, with Brazil’s being anticipated to decrease by 28% in 2013.

The Manufacturing Circle had four goals: to attract investment in manufacturing to South Africa; for South Africa to be a gateway manufacturer for sub-Saharan Africa; for South Africa to be a competitive beneficiator of its resources; and for South African products to have an excellent manufacturing reputation.

The manufacturing sector was stagnant and imports, especially Chinese, had increased resulting in an entrenched trade deficit. The Purchasing Managers Index (PMI) was at a three year low. Employment in the sector had decreased from 2 million in 2008 to 1.6 million in 2011 and the rand exchange rate was volatile, making it difficult to plan investments for business.

Municipal electricity charges did not reflect the Eskom’s price increases and required urgent attention. The Manufacturers Circle proposed a longer term and more gradual cost increase trajectory. This could be achieved by enabling the National Energy Regulator of South Africa (NERSA) to interrogate Eskom price increases and it proposed that electricity discounts be considered as an interim measure to allow manufacturers to adjust.

Mr Coenraad Bezuidenhout, Manufacturers Circle Executive Director, said control needed to be exercised over municipal electricity price increases; there needed to be a fiscal review on how public infrastructure was funded; the capacity and resources of independent regulators be improved and that benchmarking analysis be undertaken. He added that a study collating all research on administered prices was gathering dust.

Local procurement should be strengthened and there was a need for a strong buy local campaign through a joint statement by all stake holders and that the Circle was seeking the Committee’s support in this regard. This had to be followed up with a broader advertising campaign.

There had been positive feedback from members of the Circle on the various manufacturing incentives, but there had not been any successful application by manufacturers to the jobs fund.

Discussion
Mr G Hill-Lewis (DA) asked, with regard to ITAC, whether there was evidence of countervailing subsidies.

Mr W James (DA) said that South Africa was exporting steel to China yet Cape Gate Steel manufacturers were competing with cheap Chinese steel imports which, he suspected, were being subsidised.

Mr B Radebe (ANC) asked how the Circle interacted with Kumba Iron Ore Limited as Kumba would rather sell its raw material than beneficiate it. Industry need to bring to the attention of the National Regulator for Compulsory Specifications (NRCS) any low quality imports, so that they could be blocked. Why was the electricity price in BRICS countries decreasing?

Ms S Van der Merwe (ANC) said there had to be factors which influenced Johannesburg and Tshwane to charge 700% above Eskom’s prices. Had the Department’s studies been updated?

Mr X Mabasa (ANC) asked what the competitive opportunities in recycling were.

The Chairperson asked what should be done concerning skills and technology development.

Mr Strong replied that several applications had been made to the International Trade Administration Commission (ITAC) which had all been unsuccessful. Duties had decreased to 0% even though the World Trade Organization (WTO) allowed for 5% duties to be levied and countries like Brazil imposed 20% import duties. It would be meeting with ITAC to understand the situation.

He said he could see no basis or justification for the municipal electricity demand charges. Places in Mpumalanga that were served by Eskom had electricity 20% cheaper than those served by municipalities.

He said Mpact (the old Mondi Packaging) was the biggest recycler and beneficiator of waste paper and recycling employed 100,000 people. There were challenges to recycling waste paper and steel but recycling benefited the country through job creation and beneficiation.

Ms Seara Macheli-Mkhabela, Altron Group Executive: Corporate Affairs, said that Altron had experienced difficulties with countervailing duties. There were delays in applying for these duties when it had approached ITAC in connection with set top boxes. South African manufacturers had more than enough capacity to supply all South Africa’s needs. ITAC had said that it could not impose duties as it was contrary to the WTO regulations. The South African government was quick to agree to tariff reductions with most products having no duty making it difficult to compete with other countries especially when tendering for State Owned Enterprises (SOE) work.

Lots of less than good quality products were entering the market. The challenge was that the low quality needed to be proven through testing by which time the damage had already been done. South African products were of a high quality and the level of technical specifications needed to be upheld in which case companies would be competitive.

Altron had done work in partnering for skills development and in providing experiential training. 

Mr Bezuidenhout said there appeared to be an inertia in trade administration, trade standards and customs, with ITAC seeming to be in opposition to the growth of manufacturing. South Africa was more open than any of its BRICS partners and needed to take action against predatory activities.

Competition Commission
Dr Simon Roberts, Competition Commission Chief Economist, said that active competitiveness in manufacturing was a function of manufacturing capability. The Commission was interested in the relationship between competition and industrial policy, especially the behaviour of big firms. In the Asian example, the state had supported the establishment of many firms, not one big firm as had happened in the past in South Africa. The existence of many firms led to the development of competitiveness.  The new Industrial Policy Action Plan (IPAP) did support the establishment of many firms. The Commission was doing work in the priority areas of food production, intermediate industrial products, construction and fuel.

He referred to the polypropylene industry as a case study. Polypropylene constitute 60% of the cost of plastic products. A case had been made against Sasol of excessive pricing. Sasol generated polypropylene as a byproduct of its refining activities yet was charging import parity prices as if the product had been imported from China, inclusive of import duties and transport and other costs. Steel was another product where the raw material, iron ore, had been supplied at a discount which should have been passed on to local manufacturers yet ArcelorMittal had also imposed a high
price. Komatiland Forests was the biggest producer of logs for timber and it was pricing them for independent saw mills differently from what it was pricing for its own saw mills. As Komati was a state owned entity, the role of the state was brought into question. Government as a shareholder in Komati needed to invest in the company but that did not mean that it had to run the saw mills. The Commission was finalising its investigation.

Regional dynamics was another matter as sometimes there were stronger value chains across countries with poultry being a case in point.

Large firms or monopolies ‘owned’ their customers and spawned low levels of investment as there was no need to invest because there was no rivalry.

Discussion
Mr Hill-Lewis asked how legislated monopolies were shutting down the economy.

Mr Mabasa asked if it was relevant that products be produced labour intensively.

Mr James asked how the steel issue had arisen.

The Chairperson asked for more comment on bid rigging. Was it being suggested that a limit be placed on plastic exports to China or what other proposals could be given?

Dr Roberts replied that the Commission was not against monopolies or regulations if monopolies administered prices correctly.

The Commission was focused on intermediate industrial products, polypropylene and steel. Steel had been produced by Iscor but the need to reinvest in Iscor and in new technology had led to the privatisation of Iscor. South Africa was a remote economy and real competition therefore was a long distance away. Thus there had been large margins in output prices and the introduction of import parity pricing. The question was who would get the benefit of the margin which was supposed to be passed on to the South African manufacturers using the steel. Another matter was what other tools government had to influence the price as the Competition Commission’s teeth were very blunt.

Bid rigging was agreements amongst companies as to who would bid and get tenders.

Sasol had invested in China but had walked away from its investment. China was a natural market and companies needed to partner with the state in a long term investment because your customers had to grow for you to grow. Sasol had made a commitment to invest in the Waterberg area on the basis of which it had not been subject to windfall taxes, but this had not been done.

Dominant firms were big enough to slow down the appeals process because there was a split between the functions of the Competition Commission and the Competition Tribunal. In other countries the Commission and Tribunal was one body and resulted in speedier decisions.

Department of Trade and Industry (the dti) - Electricity
Mr Garth Strachan, dti Acting Deputy Director-General: Industrial Development Division, said the bunched up escalation in electricity price increases posed a serious danger to the viability of the manufacturing sector. The global recession had led to 200 000 to 300 000 jobs being lost and the structure of the economy had to shift to energy efficiency and greater competitiveness, but a loss of capacity in key sectors, for example in foundries, could have a knock on effect.

There had been an emphasis on the supply side and Eskom’s build programme had led to Multi Year Price Determinations of 27%, with municipal customers being subjected to tariff loading leading to triple digit non-tariff surcharges. There was no single tariff, with significant differences existing between municipalities and tariffs were allegedly not in line with NERSA guidelines. Some municipalities appeared to be using electricity tariffs to generate revenue. This could lead to companies closing down and ultimately reducing the municipalities’ revenue base. He presented graphs comparing electricity increases with the Consumer Price Index, showing how much municipal tariffs were above Eskom’s rate and graphs showing what percentage of municipal revenue electricity revenue generated. He said there was a real threat of the price increases reaching a tipping point in 13 sectors and gave the example of how a 2.8% reduction in electricity demand of a sector (basic and fabricated metals) was the equivalent of a loss of  0.7% in GDP and a loss of over 80 000 jobs. The most vulnerable sectors were chemicals, plastics, metal foundries and glass.

The Department recommended that an intra-governmental task team examine the impact of escalating electricity tariff increases; short term measures be applied to vulnerable sectors; there was a need for one national set of tariffs; there should be single digit price increases; carbon taxes be approached with caution in the current climate; and companies be supported in recapitalising with energy efficient technologies.

The Department had commissioned research into the impact and policy applications of escalating electricity prices and changing energy mix in South Africa.

Discussion
Mr James said something radical needed to be done or IPAP would become a welfare system for failed businesses.

Ms Van der Merwe said the big problem was the ridiculous surcharges by municipalities.

Mr Radebe said that Eskom was not to blame and that the problem lay with the municipalities. Had the Department held meetings with the South African Local Government Association (SALGA) on IPAP? What difference would utilising shale gas reserves make on the cost of electricity?

Mr Hill-Lewis said that Government as Eskom’s shareholder was not taking control to ensure that there was no double digit increases.

Mr N Gcwabaza (ANC) asked what the challenges were to implementing policy.

Mr Strachan said that the questions needed to be asked elsewhere as this was not the dti’s functions or core business. The dti, however, was pointing to the serious problems outside of its core functions because it could see the danger it posed.

He recalled that there had been the stalled Regional Electricity Distributors (REDs) initiative to secure efficient distribution.

Shale gas was also not dti’s responsibility, but it was responsible for upstream oil and gas which had a massive logistics supply chain. The east and west coasts of Africa contained enormous opportunities for the oil and gas industries and South Africa had a competitive advantage because of its mining history. South Africa should focus on localization and the lifting of constraints at ports. There was an opportunity for Saldanha to be an oil and gas hub but progress had been slow. If shale gas became a reality it would double the potential of Saldanha.

Mr Radebe said that compartmentalisation should not be allowed to prevent the solving of a problem. The dti had to interact with municipalities through inter-governmental structures on their electricity tariffs.

Mr Strachan said that the dti had met with other departments and had raised the electricity price issue. He said biofuels had the capacity to create 100 000 jobs in its value chain, but the dti was not responsible for regulations around biofuels and the matter had been on the table for ten years because an initial subsidy was needed. This was said to highlight the constraints the dti faced as the gap between proposals and agreements were so long that issues were going nowhere.

Department of Trade and Industry - Automotives
Mr Mkhululi Mlota, dti Chief Director: Automotives and Components Division, said there were seven Original Equipment Manufacturers manufacturing light motor vehicles and six assemblers, with Mercedes Benz being one of them. The sector had 400 suppliers of which 120 were first tier suppliers. The industry was located in three centres - Uitenhague/Port Elizabeth, Durban and Pretoria. South Africa was a minor player, accounting for less than one percent of world production, although it was the leading manufacturer in Africa.

The production of cars had been seriously affected by the recession. Sales which had been 533 000 units had dropped to 400 000 but was now picking up again. Exports to the European Union remained negatively affected. The Automotive Investment Scheme had led to investments last year of R3.9 billion. Employment had been seriously affected with a 25% decrease in jobs in vehicle assembly. Exports in 2008 prior to the recession had been 284 000 units. In 2009 it dropped to 180 000 and in 2011 it was 300 000 units. There had been an increase in import penetration. Passenger car penetration stood at 70%. The local content of cars was not significant.

Reviewing the Motor Industry Development Programme (MIDP), he said that Vision 2020 had been adopted and that the Automotive Incentive Scheme (AIS) had replaced part of the MIDP. Implementation had taken place with R15 billion of cash grants, aligned to the WTO benefits for local value addition, given. A few firms, for example, catalytic converter producers, had been affected by this and they would get special transitional arrangements. ITAC/ SARS guidelines would be coming out in the very near future.

Medium and Heavy Commercial Vehicles (MHCVs) had been designated and 80% of the body had to be assembled in South Africa, with the drive train and engines slated for later inclusion. It was extending investment support to encourage local production and it was extending production incentives and amending regulations for the assembly of semi knocked down vehicles. It was working with the Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) for the financing of trucks and buses but the market was small and therefore it was lobbying for better trade protocols regionally.

There was a need to look at regulatory changes for electric vehicles. Industrial support was given through the Automotive Production and Development programme (APDP).

The Supplier Development programme with UNIDO to 65 firms was a competitive improvement initiative. It was developing new frameworks for  competitive improvement, targeting two value chains currently and it was forging links internationally, for example, with Productivity Japan.

The APDP was a tool for growth in the industry but it was not enough as the rest of the APDP needed to be implemented.  Administrative issues needed to be investigated. It was working on MHCV support and it was targeting competitive challenges.

Discussion
Mr Radebe said the Eastern Cape had raised the issue of metal sheets for bus bodies. Would Arcelor Mittal SA (AMSA) be able to provide that? Would the target of 80% local content for buses be achieved if AMSA could not give guarantees? Was there a programme to ensure skills development at universities and technikons?

Mr Gcwabaza asked if cars were being imported through Durban harbour or were they destined for neighboring countries.

Mr Mlota replied that steel for the buses were available, although it was an ongoing issue between the industry and AMSA as AMSA wanted guaranteed quantities. Other types of steel also required by the auto industry was not available.

The Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University was working with Volkswagen (VW) on developing a mechatronics course which would develop specific skills required in the industry.

The imports in Durban harbour were used vehicles destined for  neighbouring countries.

Department of Trade and Industry – Clothing & Textiles
Mr Abisha Tembo, dti Chief Director: Clothing, Textiles, Leather and Footwear, said that the sector accounted for 120 000 jobs and 11% of manufacturing employment. Indirectly it accounted for 320 000 jobs. The sector had a turnover of R35 billion which was 2.8% of GDP and there were 2 000 active companies in the sector. He said that while the production in clothing had declined there had been an increase in the production of footwear. One of the challenges the sector faced were not so much the strength of the rand as its volatility, which created challenges from a planning perspective and dampened the enthusiasm to invest. Another was illegal imports and under invoicing. The latter had decreased since reference pricing had been introduced. There was no succession plans regarding the sector education and skills gaps. The National Skills Fund had turned down their application for the funding of training. Foreign direct investment was not attractive for investors.

In the Clothing & Textiles Competitiveness programme the dti had provided Competitiveness Improvement Programme (CIP) incentives totaling R283 million of which R36.5 million had been disbursed. The small value of the disbursements was because it was a three year programme and disbursements were only made when targets had been met.

Production Improvement Programme (PIP) incentives of R501 million had been disbursed of a total of R637.5 million. Companies had seen the success resulting from participation in the scheme and 50 000 jobs had been saved with 19 000 occurring in the footwear industry. Over 12 000 jobs had been created with 6 600 created in the footwear industry. In addition major retailers were now confidently purchasing locally with Foschini purchasing 68% locally made goods and Edcon’s 45%.

Footwear purchases had increased, especially of protective footwear and programmes had been developed to decrease footwear imports and further increase footwear manufacture.

The Duty Credit Certificate Scheme (DCCS) had been discontinued and PIP had been promoted as its replacement in the long term. There were question marks over how it would be funded in the other regional countries but South Africa's was self-funded.

The Southern African Customs Union (SACU)'s industrial policy was being pursued through a pilot hides and tanning project.

Discussion
Mr Mabasa said it appeared there was no role for co-operatives.

Mr Gcwabaza asked if the Department was looking to revive the cotton industry.

Mr Tembo replied that the Department was working with the co-operatives unit in the Department but that co-operatives were not part of the Bargaining Council.

He said the cotton price was governed by the Liverpool Index where the price was fixed but farmers growing cotton wanted to beneficiate their raw materials into lint, yarns and fabrics rather than just sell it.

He said that the support given to the sector in 2002 was across the board not just for footwear. But that there had been policing difficulties, so the Department had not gained full advantage from it. The focus this time had been on local content even at the expense of price and on giving support to companies which had the capability to supply.

The meeting was adjourned.


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