Home > General > Don’t forget the guy on the street

Don’t forget the guy on the street

While reading the newspaper I was wondering where all the articles on the development of micro and small businesses were. The newspapers are full of the new indegenisation act and how it is affecting companies. There is news on the mining sector and changes taking place over there and reports on the larger companies. The normal citizen of this country is not affected directly by this news. I would like to believe that the business section of the newspapers should be showcasing and reporting on small business.
The ordinary Zimbabwean on the streets is trying to find their next dollar, their next contract, their next deal. The majority of the people are not being represented by the different legislation being adopted by government. Our laws and policies are doing nothing to stem these problems and if we keep our heads in the sand the problems will continue to compound.
It seems that a lot is being done to stimulate large businesses but the smaller businesses are not being addressed. Those operating in the third world business sector, the lower end of business are not represented adequately. By failing to address this sector that is made up of the majority of Zimbabweans, we are failing to tackle the problem from its roots. There is $5 billion circulating in the informal sector and also another $5 billion circulating in the formal sector, yet we ignore this sector.
More can be done to boost smaller businesses. More attention and focus can be put on this sector. With only 5% of people employed in the formal sector it makes sense to commit resources and expertise to grow the informal sector. Most families are dependant on the informal sector, but they do not have access to the proper support that they need. Larger companies have access to great international speakers, trainers and consultants, yet the informal business person is going it alone. We are missing the mark. If 95% of the population is working in the informal sector shouldn’t our indegenisation and economic strategies reflect this? Our indegenisation seems focused on the few foreign owned firms, a move which does little for the man on the street.
Indegenisation should stop being just propaganda but should encourage active involvement in the lower end of business to bring about wide scale change. If the fortunes of 95% of the population change, this will affect the economic and social landscape of the country. With more than half the population living below the poverty datum line, our focus should be on this demographic.

Categories: General
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