Seifsa reiterates willingness to work with govt as it celebrates its eightieth anniversary

9th October 2023 By: Darren Parker - Creamer Media Contributing Editor Online

The Steel and Engineering Industries Federation of Southern Africa (Seifsa) has decalred renewed goodwill and willingness to work with government after hosting Finance Minister Enoch Godongwana and Minister in the Presidency Khumbudzo Ntshavheni at its 80-year Anniversary Gala Dinner on October 6.

Seifsa extended an invitation to the two Ministers after meeting with President Cyril Ramaphosa on April 18.

Seifsa president Elias Monage referred to “... the goodwill that emanated from our historic meeting and the willingness of this sector to want to work collaboratively with government...” in his address on the evening.

The gala dinner, which was held at the Wanderers Ballroom, in Illovo, Gauteng, was a black-tie event with about 300 guests, including dignitaries, captains of industry, business leaders, CEOs and senior industry executives.

The gala evening was held to celebrate Seifsa’s 80 years of service as a national employer federation representing employers in the metals and engineering industries, which have historically played a crucial role in the domestic economy that comprises 26% of the broader manufacturing sector.

Seifsa CEO Lucio Trentini was quick to acknowledge the current “unprecedented times” and stressed the importance of business and government working together to address the many challenges facing South Africa, which included a sluggish economy, an ever-rising unemployment rate, loadshedding and myriad logistical problems that he said threatened to prevent any growth from occurring.

Monage agreed that constructive engagement between business and government was necessary, referring to the parties as “natural allies”, as both have a vested interest in South Africa's economic success.

He said Seifsa had made a firm commitment to forge a closer partnership between government and business, and listed the federation's recent engagements with Ramaphosa, Deputy President Paul Mashatile and other Cabinet Ministers as illustration.

Monage said that, while Seifsa did not always agree with all government policies, the federation would remain committed to building a prosperous South Africa.