The Furniture Industry Masterplan (FIMP) has been submitted to all relevant stakeholders and will be finalised and implemented in the coming months, Department of Trade, Industry and Competition (DTIC) agroprocessing and forestry-based industries chief director Ncumisa Mcata-Mhlauli confirms.
The FIMP was established to set clear guidelines and targets for the furniture manufacturing industry, as well as guide public sector procurement as part of government's efforts to support and stimulate the industry.
It is also centered around three pillars, namely market access, transformation and competitiveness improvement.
“Some of the target objectives set for the furniture industry include the building of a fast-growing, profitable, inclusive and sustainable South African furniture industry. [It also aims] to increase local production by 50% from current baseline levels by the end of 2021, as well as the improvement of domestic and export sales by 100% from current baseline by end of 2024.
"[It also seeks to] increase formal employment from current levels by 25% and double the participation of black and/or women participants in industry by end of 2022,” she said in a statement on October 22.
She added that, despite massive challenges that were posed by the Covid-19 pandemic, the department continued with the implementation of the re-imagined Industrial Strategy Master Plans.
“Across all Master Plans, the DTIC will continue focusing its efforts on supporting local manufacturers to increase local capacity in order to respond efficiently to the growing domestic demand and to reduce dependency on imports,” she said, noting that the department also intends to improve on its non-financial support and focus efforts on addressing illicit trade, and the use of trade measures to support domestic industry, including the strategic use of standards to secure markets for South African products.