Speaking during the Eastern Cape Chamber of Business (ECCOB) annual business awards and fundraising event in Mthatha, MEC for Eastern Cape Economic Development, Environmental Affairs and Tourism (DEDEAT), Mlungisi Mvoko congratulated the ECCOB for instituting the annual awards in recognition of good performance among EC businesses.
“We congratulate ECCOB and support this initiative, it is our view that this can only improve business performance and put the province on a higher pedestal. That this initiative is peer-driven, independent of government is even more encouraging” says MEC Mvoko.
MEC Mvoko further applauds business for the critical role it has played during the difficult time of the COVID-19 pandemic and continues to play to keep the economy afloat.
“It is through the role that business plays in the economy that we still have somewhat a functioning economy. The government recognises that on its own it cannot overcome the challenges of unemployment and poverty but should take a leading role in providing a conducive environment for the economy to thrive and create jobs” submits Mvoko.
ECCOB says the awards recognise men and women who continue to make the Eastern Cape proud, people who against all odds have emerged from all angles to create a better world for many poor South Africans.
The Fourth Annual Eastern Cape Business awards and fundraising dinner took place in Mthatha at Savoy Hotel and Conference Centre on 2 December 2022.
With the event theme being “Paying service providers within 30 days”, the speakers agree that part of providing adequate support to business include paying them on time. When government fails in its obligation, business cash flows get affected and this leads to the closure of many businesses.
Addressing the subject, MEC says the province pays within the period of 12 days barring two departments.
He adds that the Treasury, Office of the Premier, and EC Department of Health are working on a plan to improve efficiencies in the department, so that it can meet its financial obligations, including payment of service providers on time.
Overall, MEC Mvoko called for collaborative efforts between business and government institutions including the developmental agencies to:
• Create business-to-business platforms for small enterprises to access finance and other market opportunities
• Increase awareness of government procurement opportunities
• Facilitate a pipeline for small business funding through collaborations with development finance institutions.
Later in the evening, MEC Mvoko together with OR District Executive Mayor, Cllr Mesuli Ngqondwana handed 35 awards to EC businesspeople operating within the province and beyond.