Moves afoot to change the structure of the economy

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Cape Town - Government's Economic Sector and Employment cluster is developing a three-year Industrial Policy Action Plan (IPAP) to help alter the structure of the economy.

Minister of Science and Technology Naledi Pandor said on Tuesday the new IPAP expands the first plan with more focus on scaling up the industrial policy interventions to alter the structure of the economy so that it supports decent work and sustainable livelihood.

She was speaking during the Economic Sectors and Employment cluster Programme of Action (PoA) media briefing. This is the first report on progress of the implementation of the PoA under the newly reconfigured economic cluster.

The cluster had begun to identify policy options to unblock the structural constraints that impact on the country's ability to grow an economy that can create more jobs.

In the automotive sector, which is the hardest hit by the current financial crisis, the roll-out of the Automotive Production Development Programme (APDP) has begun to facilitate growth and development of domestic components and vehicle manufacturing.

In this regard, Pandor said, the Automotive Investment Scheme (AIS) guidelines on the grant to both Original Equipment Manufacturers and component manufacturers is out for public comment.

"The scheme is meant to deepen the domestic automotive manufacturing industry."

She said further work was underway to explore opportunities in the medium and heavy commercial vehicles value chain.

Meanwhile, the competitiveness programme was launched in the clothing and textile sector in April 2009. Further work is being done to finalise the architecture of a production incentive scheme which is aimed at preserving production capabilities and employment within the sector.