To support the local economy, beverage manufacturer Coca-Cola has committed to make R240-million available over the next three years to drive the Buy Local campaign.
This forms part of an agreement concluded with the competition authorities last year.
Trade, Industry and Competition Minister Ebrahim Patel on March 9 told delegates at the Proudly South African Summit and Expo, in Cape Towns, that the contribution would help in monitoring implementation gaps and identifying new opportunities for scaling up production of locally made goods.
“To address the availability of locally-produced products, we now have a number of commitments from the business community and retailers to partner with us on the localisation campaign. To address the need for larger markets, the President launched the start of trading under the African Continental Free Trade Area, to enable scale efficiencies to kick in.
“We have reached an agreement now in the National Economic Development and Labour Council to work together to make locally many products we [currently] import. Our non-oil import bill in 2019 was R1.1-trillion. We are setting ourselves the target over a five-year period, to reduce that by 20%.
"That would entail bringing R200-billion back into local production, adding up to 4% to our gross domestic product and creating many, many more jobs for young South Africans,” the Minister said.
He reiterated that it was about time South Africans started buying local.
“Wearing a local suit, eating local fruit and promoting local music and film is what this campaign is all about."