SA goods create sustainable job opportunities

Put best foot forward in local sneakers to power economy

Theo Baloyi owner of local sneaker brand Bathu
Theo Baloyi owner of local sneaker brand Bathu
Image: SUPPLIED

When last did you rock an SA-produced footwear? If your answer is never, then think twice and get yourself a pair to start supporting local businesses.

It is astonishing to see the popularity of SA sneaker brands being recognised locally. SA designers are boasting with pride their distinctive brands that are confidently making their dominance felt in the local fashion market.

Sneakers such as Bathu, Spelete and Drip have become popular household brands in SA. The design and fashion invested in the sneakers resonate well with the target markets across all segments. One cannot go around without noticing people wearing these outstanding and exceptional custom-made brands.

The increased uptake of the sneaker brands clearly demonstrates that South Africans are keen to support their own home-produced products. Rallying behind purchasing locally produced merchandise is beneficial to the growth of the country’s economy and creating sustainable job opportunities.

Recently, Proudly South African launched a “Buy Local Consumer” educational campaign, calling upon all of us to contribute in putting the SA economy and South Africans back to work by buying local brands.

Among the pillars of President Cyril Ramaphosa’s economic reconstruction and recovery plan announced in parliament is the mobilisation of localisation. The president alluded that government was going to support a massive growth in local production and make SA exports much more competitive. He further called on every South African to contribute to government’s recovery effort by choosing to buy local goods and support local business.

The department of trade and industry’s industrial policy action plan has identified the textiles, clothing, leather and footwear sector as critical to the industrial development of the SA economy. Government has introduced incentives to encourage investment and improve competitiveness in the sector. It is also imperative for investors to channel their monies into the local manufacturing sector and its effort to assist in reigniting the economy. 

South Africans must guard against counterfeit goods on the locally produced brands and condemn it when it occurs. Counterfeit goods are detrimental to the economic growth prospects and lead to an increment of the unemployment rate in SA. Syndicates of such modus operandi cannot be allowed to run their illegal operations in our country. Consumers are urged to refrain from buying counterfeit goods and report those who are selling them to law enforcement agencies.

Fellow compatriots are encouraged to take advantage of this year’s Black Friday sales scheduled for November 27, to buy locally manufactured goods as they play a critical part in rebuilding the new economy of the country. Choosing to buy local sneakers determines the success and vast recognition of these brands.

Let’s make our sneaker brands trend by sharing our pictures on social media using #BuyLocal; #LocalIsLekker and #MadeInSA.

• Moahlodi Maphori works for GCIS as an assistant director and writes in his personal capacity

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