Skip to content Skip to left sidebar Skip to footer

Local Economic Development

22 February 2024 Opportunity: The National Business Initiative (NBI)

Opportunity: The National Business Initiative (NBI)

14 February 2024

The National Business Initiative (NBI) wishes to appoint a professional that will provide Construction Project Management and Quantity Surveying services to support the establishment of skills and enterprise development hubs (Installation, Repair and Maintenance Hubs) across various locations across the country. In the initial stages, the PM/QS will work as part of a team of consultants, to deliver concept and viability stages. At the point of handover
during stage 3, their role will shift to act as a client representative and to oversee the work of the professionals appointed to deliver stages 3-6.

The National Business Initiative (NBI) is the Project Executing Agency; for the establishment of 7 IRM Hubs across South Africa.

IRM hubs are multi-functional industrial facilities that act as interfaces between supply and demand of labour. They support all facets of job creation throughout the value chain in different kinds of installation, repair and maintenance businesses. The IRM hub is a public institution (facility) that serves entrepreneurs and SMMEs from the local community: It provides workspaces, technology, business development support and skills training to existing enterprises and start-ups. The hub also serves as a public institution (facility) that supports the delivery of short skills programmes to enable unemployed youth to access employment opportunities in entry level technical roles in installation, repair and maintenance. The IRM hub builds networks of the business community and acts as facilitator for SMMEs to access business opportunities.

Infrastructure-wise, the hubs will consist of a set of workshop spaces for different user groups, a maker space, meeting and training rooms and an entrance area that foresees a hall for multiple purposes as well as a space for selected businesses to open up the hub towards the community.

It is envisaged that the construction programme will be completed in 2028 as such the contract period will be from the 15 th March 2024 until programme completion. Resource allocation will however not be full-time during the project duration. This will be reviewed annually.

We are anticipating that the successful professional will be contracted for at least 10 days per month.

Please provide your response via email to and copy no later than the 1st March 2024, indicating your availability and kindly provide the following for consideration:
• CV with relevant supporting documents.
• Evidence of having completed similar work.
• Proof of registration with the SACPCMP.
• A daily professional fee rate for the Provision of the aforementioned services

Click here to read more.

Issued: National Business Initiative (NBI)

30 August 2023 Media Release: Nominate Exceptional SMMEs for SATSA Tourism Business Incubator (new slots open)

Media Release: Nominate Exceptional SMMEs for SATSA Tourism Business Incubator (new slots open)

For Immediate Release
30 August 2023

As reported back by Southern Africa Tourism Services Association (SATSA) Chief Executive Officer (CEO), David Frost, at yesterday’s Annual General Meeting (AGM), the impact of our Tourism Business Incubator has echoed throughout our industry, inspiring change, and exemplifying the potential within every Small, Medium and Micro Entrepreneurs (SMME).

We are proud of our achievements, our collaborations with key associations like Association of South African Travel Agency (ASATA) and Federated Hospitality Association of South Africa (FEDHASA), the incubation of 32 black owned SMMEs, and our support from well-known members including City Lodge Hotel Group, Europcar, New Frontiers, and more.

SATSA’s Tourism Business Incubator, a Non-Profit Company established to help SATSA members and stakeholders implement enterprise and supplier development, shares the mission with others like Anglo American Zimele, to foster growth beyond boundaries.

Now we’re looking ahead to year two of the project, and with ten places having become available, we invite you to play an essential part in this journey by nominating deserving small businesses (with 51% or more black ownership) for our incubation program. Nominees should have a turnover of less than R50 million and be operating for at least one year. Your nominations can elevate these entrepreneurs, contributing to our entire industry’s prosperity.

To nominate an SMME (or yourself-if you meet the requirements), please send the following details to Hannelie Du Toit ( before close of business 1 September 2023:

  1. Business Name
  2. Owner’s Name
  3. Type of business (this can be any type of business within the tourism value chain including services such as laundry, etc.)
  4. Email Address
  5. Mobile Contact Number

For more information, contact Akash Singh ( from Sigma International.

Issued by: The SATSA Team


8 August 2023 Media Release: GRDM officials engage key stakeholders in Fresh Produce Market development and more

Media Release: GRDM officials engage key stakeholders in Fresh Produce Market development and more

For Immediate Release
8 August 2023

Garden Route District Municipality (GRDM) officials were invited by the Department of Trade, Industry and Competition (DTIC) to meet and engage various stakeholders that are key stakeholders in the establishment, financing, and operations of fresh produce markets in South Africa. Various engagements were scheduled between 02 to 05 August 2023. The delegation was led by the GRDM Strategic Manager Thembani Loliwe.

The first meeting was held at the DTIC office in Pretoria where the GRDM delegation presented the status, progress and challenges, thus far, in the establishment of the Garden Route Fresh Produce Market. The main focus areas of these engagements were to look at all compliance requirements, funding sources, and the status of the current fresh produce markets in South Africa.

A very fruitful engagement was also held with the Chief Executive Officer of the National Agricultural Market Council (NAMC). One of the critical matters raised by NAMC was around the ownership and operation of the fresh produce market. It was clear from the findings of various investigations done by this body, that the ownership and the operations are more effective when they are separated i.e. ownership rests with the Municipality but operations are performed via the corporatised model.

“For a state-of-the-art modern National Fresh Produce Market, an investment of between R 250 000 0000 and R 300 000 000 will be required,” said Thembani Loliwe.

It became clear that GRDM will not be in a position to finance such an operation with its own generated revenue. Various funding options were discussed and part of the resolutions of these engagements were to collectively work on a funding proposal that will be bankable and submitted to private and public funders.

Further to the boardroom discussion there were also site visits to some of the establishments and to observe the operations and the technology that is being used to run such businesses. All those involved agreed that there is a case for a Fresh Produce Market in the Garden Route region.

Other than Fresh Produce Market, further discussions were held around the revitalisation of our township economy – to create something similar to Vilikazi Street in Soweto. More discussions are planned to take this priority further with the City of Joburg (CoJ). CoJ showed interest in assisting GRDM in ensuring that it succeeds in empowering and uplifting the region’s township economy.

Collectively the following resolutions were taken:

• Formal feedback to GRDM Council (all stakeholders present at these engagements will be part of that);
• DTIC will provide technical inputs on the designs of the Fresh Produce Market;
• Visit the newly established Kei Bridge Fresh Produce Market;
• DTIC to facilitate a meeting with the HOD of the Western Cape Department of Agriculture;
• DTIC to assist GRDM with funding applications;
• DTIC facilitate a workshop with the possible funder for GRDM projects;
• Planned delegation to the Netherlands Fresh Produce Market in October 2023, possibly led by the Deputy Minister of Trade and Industry.

Site visits were undertaken to CoJ, as well as the City of Tshwane around some of the similar critical infrastructure projects that GRDM is embarking on. These two city cities have been in operation, for decades and running similar projects that GRDM is planning.

GRDM believe that the National Fresh Produce Market can bring much-needed revenue for the GRDM. Such a facility can create much-needed employment for the region. Joburg and Tshwane are making a combined turnover of about R14 billion and employ more than 450 employees.

The visit was a huge success and the Municipal Manager will ensure that the above resolutions will be followed up.

Feature image: The delegation from GRDM during one of their engagements at the City of Johannesburg.



1 August 2023 Media Release: The Garden Route remains a hub of agricultural exports

Media Release: The Garden Route remains a hub of agricultural exports

For Immediate Release
1 August 2023

The Garden Route is a region renowned for its natural beauty and diverse agricultural offerings. According to the latest data available to the District Economic Development Unit of Garden Route District Municipality (GRDM), the top ten exported products from the district collectively accounted for approximately 72.89% of the region’s total exports.

According to Ald. Memory Booysen, GRDM Executive Mayor: “A substantial share of exports, 25.05%, includes fresh apples, pears, and quinces”.

“These high-quality fruits are in demand worldwide. Germany, Russia, the United Kingdom, Indonesia, and Egypt, for instance, are the largest importers of apples worldwide.”

“Coming in second at 18.76% are fresh or dried citrus fruits. The export of leather further prepared, after tanning or crusting contributes around 7.59% to the district’s export revenue,” said Booysen.

GRDM is also busy with the process to establish a fresh produce market for the Garden Route. At the moment, GRDM is on the lookout for land to purchase. This will be followed by a process of appointing a service provider to design the fresh produce market and drive additional processes. If the GRDM is able to have its own fresh produce market, it will also small-scale farmers to grow their businesses and create a more inclusive agricultural economy. This is in line with GRDM’s Growth and Development Strategy. Local producers will be able to supply produce to the regional market and save a lot of costs on transport and reduce greenhouse emissions.

The Garden Route is already known for its international agricultural footprint. One product, in particular, is the De Rustica Coratina Estate Collection Extra Virgin Olive Oil. The product achieved the prestigious Double Gold award during the 2023 Aurora International Taste Challenge, solidifying its status as the best in the world.
The top exported products also include canola, proteas, macadamia nuts, pomegranate, aloe cosmetic products, barley, wheat, gin, wine from Bitou & Kannaland, and live ostrich birds.

In addition to agriculture, the Garden Route excels in other industries, including boat building and furniture manufacturing, further contributing to the region’s economic growth.

While the Garden Route has achieved remarkable success in its export ventures, there are still challenges that need attention to unlock the district’s full potential. Some of the key challenges faced by industries include:

  1. Veterinary challenges with certification.
  2. Environmental/export Regulations on farming in other countries, such as the UK’s restrictions on citrus.
  3. Lack of value-adding for primary agricultural products despite high crop volumes.
  4. Connection to the power supply with competitive pricing.
  5. Lengthy permitting processes by the Department of Environmental Affairs and Cape Nature.
  6. Logistics to major ports and dry stock locations from the main centre.
  7. Absence of Southern Africa Development Community Free Trade benefits.
  8. Double charges on export and import duties on services, e.g., Botswana.
  9. Limited facilities for launching big boats and yachts.
  10. Challenges in marketing locally manufactured products.

The Garden Route authorities are addressing these challenges through a partnership with Seda, the Western Cape Departments of Agriculture and Local Government, creating platforms for market access at the Pop-Up markets in shopping malls and currently in the process of establishing an Agro-processing facility for honeybush, working towards creating a conducive environment for industries to thrive.

The Western Cape Department of Economic Development and Tourism is currently rolling out a provincial-wide export awareness campaign. A session was, as recently as 21 July 2023, held in George with several people interested in exporting.

Other potential commodities and some already growing for export, include but are not limited to honeybush, sceletium, tea, olives, grape juice, kiwifruit, cannabis, and strawberries, along with services in the IT sector.

Feature image: Rows of apple trees laden with fruit in late Autumn in George area of Waboomskraal South Africa.



27 June 2023 Registration for GRIFF now Open!!




  • Industry program includes Broadcasters, Industry Professionals/Film Tourism and Network Functions
  • 30 Films featured in competition from over 20 countries
  • Delegate Pass R200 (See details for other ticked events)
  • Now Gold Status recognition in its 5th year, GRIFF continues to evolve.
  • Proudly supported by NFVF, Wesgro & Mossel Bay Tourism
  • Email: for more information
  • Industry Program to be announced @grifffilmfest

Direct flights to George or just 31/2hrs from Cape Town

For more information, visit the website:  WWW.GRIFF.CO.ZA


GRIFF is a festival for filmmakers, creative expression, education, new technology and media. The GRIFF festival supports emerging and established filmmakers, encourages community participation and learning through innovation. “Experience is everything” remains our mantra with an added online feel “Get your GRIFF on”

26 June 2023 SMME Booster Fund (the Fund) open for Applications

SMME Booster Fund (the Fund) open for Applications

The SMME Booster Fund (the Fund) is a fund that will provide financial support to organisations that implement business development support projects and/or programmes aimed at growing and developing SMMEs. The Fund will focus on projects and/or programmes that support high-growth, Western Cape-based SMMEs. The Fund utilises a co-funding implementation model which encourages collaboration and partnerships.

Business development support includes aspects of support such as training, mentoring, coaching, financial planning, assisting with compliance, providing financial assistance, facilitating access to finance, providing technical support in the form of equipment, specialised software and licensing etc. The financial support from the SMME Booster Fund will focus only on the technical support aspect of the project and/or programme. The rollout of the other aspects such as training, mentoring, coaching, access to market interventions etc. will be funded by the organisation applying for funding. The support provided by the Fund will thus enable the selected organisations to enhance their projects and programmes with an added element of technical support.

The Fund will support projects and programmes that focus on the following categories:

Category 1:  Export Development
Category 2:  Women-owned Business
Category 3:  Youth-owned Businesses
Category 4:  Township-based Businesses

The selection of beneficiaries for the Fund will be initiated through this call for proposals. The proposals received will undergo a pre-qualification check, an evaluation, and an adjudication phase. The proposals will be evaluated and adjudicated against pre-determined criteria.

Click on the link to access the following forms:  SMME Booster Fund Application Guide 2023  and Call for Proposals 2023

To apply please click on the following link:

For more information.  Please contact: or 021 4839112

For assistance on how to navigate the online application system, please click on the following link:  SMME Booster 2023 Online Application Platform Guide

Closing Date: 11 July 2023

Issued: Department of Economic Development and Tourism

17 May 2023 Media Release: Garden Route and Klein Karoo Tourism Office elevates the region at the 2023 Africa Indaba Show

Media Release: Garden Route and Klein Karoo Tourism Office elevates the region at the 2023 Africa Indaba Show

For Immediate Release
17 May 2023

Garden Route and Klein Karoo Tourism (GR&KK) Regional Tourism Office (RTO) of Garden Route District Municipality (GRDM), recently attended the 3 day Africa Travel Indaba 2023 held at the International Convention Centre (ICC) in Durban. In accordance with the GRDM Tourism and the Growth and Development Strategies, GRDM must market / sell the region.

Tourism marketing and development Unit is responsible for coordinating regional tourism initiatives and promotes and develops tourism throughout the region, while working closely with eight (8) Local Tourism Offices (LTO).  With a focus on selling and promoting the region’s vast potential, GR&KK also aims to attract global attention and foster economic growth in the district.

GR&KK tourism representatives who attended the 2023 Africa Indaba Show last week in Durban. FLTR: Joan Shaw – Tourism Manager from George/Wilderness/Uniondale Tourism, Denver Johnson – GRDM Tourism Officer and Thozeka Sikali from Visit Knysna.

From 09 May – 11 May 2023, preceded by a Business Opportunity Networking Day (BONDay) on 08 May 2023, the Africa Indaba Show aimed to provide a platform for thought leadership, knowledge sharing, and market insight. BONDay is developed in collaboration with global tourism organisations, continental experts, and industry associations.

During the trade show, African tourism exhibitors showcased their offerings to international and local buyers, destination marketing companies and leisure tourism service providers. The event allowed travel trade professionals to meet face-to-face with some of the most influential buyers on the continent, and gain a deeper understanding of Africa’s excellence and endless potential. As a result of these opportunities and quality connections, Africa will be able to shape its future.

According to GRDM representatives, several new and existing connections were made over the course of the three days, as the GRDM delegation engaged with various domestic and international buyers interested in learning about our area, re-visiting or expanding their tourism offerings by integrating the Garden Route & Klein Karoo into their existing packages.

The following top four tourism offerings were most popular under the tourism buyers

  • Educational trips to familiarize tour/travel agents of existing and new products/offerings in the Garden Route & Klein Karoo
  • High-end luxury travel (5 Star)
  • Incentive travel (Golfing, wine routes, craft beer and gin experiences)
  • Camping and caravan offerings in the Garden Route & Klein Karoo – most interest from the domestic market

The Western Cape stand was hosted by Wesgro, with the GR&KK Regional Tourism Office also forming part of it to promote the region along with Visit Knysna, George, Wilderness and Uniondale Tourism LTOs.

Africa’s Travel Indaba is an iconic African leisure trade show, owned by South African Tourism, with the specific objective of creating market access for our vast array of African leisure tourism products.

Learn more about each local tourism office by accessing their websites via the GR&KK website here:


22 March 2023 Media release:  Garden Route District hosts its 2nd Safer Schools Conference

Media release:  Garden Route District hosts its 2nd Safer Schools Conference

For Immediate Release
23 March 2023

On March 18, 2023, the Garden Route District Municipality (GRDM) hosted the second Safer School Conference in Plettenberg Bay in collaboration with 7 b-municipalities, the Western Cape Department of Community Safety, and the South African Police Services (SAPS) and several school representatives – including learners and principals. There were also a few community organisations present, such as neighbourhood watches and community policing forums.

During the Safer School Conference, the hall was packed with delegates.

Safer Schools encompasses a whole-of-society and whole-of-government approach, with numerous stakeholders working together to promote school safety and reduce the prevalence of violence. A game-changer objective of the event was to link schools with local police stations in order to raise awareness among children about crime and violence and their impact on individuals, families, and education..  Also, to influence, train, and equip learners, families, teachers, and community members with effective partnership knowledge that will encompass a holistic approach to how the school operates in terms of safety.

The interactive program of the day included addresses from a number of remarkable speakers, including GRDM’s Executive Mayor, Alderman Memory Booysen, who once again inspired learners with his own story of growth.  The other speakers also conveyed their messages, which included, the impact of substance abuse; crime at school; and gang-related issues, to the audience in an incredibly simple, but informative and understandable manner, encouraging participants to form a coalition with government and community stakeholders and reduce crime.

A speech by former prisoner Micheal Dlamini, who served over forty years in prison, was one of the highlights of the conference. Dlamini urged children to listen to their parents as well as elders in the community when they say NO. Also, they choose their friends wisely. “Gangsterism is not easy, and prisons are not good. Stop disrespecting your teachers – STOP bad habits.”

During the second segment of the program, there was much excitement and it was clear that the topics were something school-goers encountered every day. Five break-away groups were created addressing the following topics:

–  Social media impact

–  Impact of substance abuse

–  Gender-based violence

–  Gang-related issues

–  Sexual crimes and teenage pregnancies

All the learners present formed part of the different groups and ‘grow-ups’ were amazed by the knowledge, eagerness and confidence they portrayed.  Also, the curiosity in asking questions and feedback provided, was also a clear sign that the message reached them and they learned a lot through the conference.

During the closing remarks and vote of thanks, it was evident that partnerships are essential for addressing the topics discussed. Also that the success of this type of program depends on the cooperation of all stakeholders, from the government to sector departments, to communities and their leaders.  The importance of parenting also came to the fore, and the organisers were tasked with developing a program that would equip parents with the tools they need to succeed. The group discussions also identified other issues that needed to be addressed in future programmes that arose as shortcomings.  In order to ensure the success of the event, the outcomes of the day need to be channeled to the correct people.  In conclusion, the audience was reminded that a lot of knowledge was placed in their hands during the event, but that each person has a choice, and it is up to them to do the right thing with it.


01 March 2023 Media Release: Nishendra Moodley begins leadership role at the EDP

Nishendra Moodley begins leadership role at the EDP

For Immediate Release
1 March 2023

The EDP’s new CEO Nishendra Moodley takes over from outgoing CEO Andrew Boraine as the organisation prepares to build its reach and resilience over the next three years.

The Economic Development Partnership’s (EDP) new CEO, Nishendra Moodley, has officially taken over the organisation’s leadership from outgoing CEO and founder, Andrew Boraine.

This follows an extensive handover, during which the EDP’s leadership met many of the organisation’s partners and stakeholders to discuss the EDP’s growing role as a collaborative intermediary promoting ‘partnering for action’ towards inclusive, sustainable social and economic development in South Africa.

Nishendra says: “The EDP is a unique organisation that, under Andrew’s trusted leadership, has played a very influential role over the last decade, quickly adapting to provide strategic support in times of need such as during Cape Town’s water crisis and the COVID-19 pandemic. I share its principles, values and ethos and am excited about the creative role the EDP can play in our country. My aim is to deepen our practices as a collaborative intermediary and to work with our partners to build increasing capacity to implement joint actions for systems change.”

Nishendra’s arrival coincides with an expanded vision, adopted by the EDP Board to build the EDP’s resilience and reach over the next three years. While the EDP’s core offering remains the same, the organisation’s key focus areas for the next three years include Energy and Climate, Water Resilience, Infrastructure and Mobility, Employment and Economic Opportunity, Food Systems, Spatial Transformation and Strategic Capacity Building. The organisation will also engage with partners nationally to increase its impact.

The EDP’s leadership meets with municipal leadership in the Garden Route District on 01 March 2023. From left to right: Rushka Ely, EDP; Lusanda Menze, Executive Manager: Planning and Economic Development; Melanie Wilson, Manager: Tourism and District Economic Development; Andrew Boraine, former EDP CEO; Monde Stratu, GRDM Municipal Manager; Nishendra Moodley, EDP CEO; Natalie Rubenheimer, Senior DED Officer, and Paul Hoffman, EDP.

“South Africa faces a ‘crisis of implementation’ – as a county we have strong policies and plans but often low agreement on how to deliver on them,” says Nishendra. “We need new ways to engage with the complex, inter-connected challenges we face, and to ensure that we achieve impact through our collective action. The EDP’s role as an independent intermediary that promotes action-oriented partnering and the building of trust is thus more relevant than ever.”

While Andrew has stepped down as CEO, he will continue to play a support role to the EDP. With over 40 years of experience as a systems change-maker, he will now work as an independent partnering practitioner, while teaching and promoting relational governance approaches.

“I’m stepping down fully believing in the continued purpose, role and value-add of the EDP, and confident of Nishendra’s vision and capacity to drive it to the next stage. Leadership transitions in organisations, if handled poorly can result in uncertainty and loss of momentum, but under the full oversight of the EDP Board, we’ve undertaken a very thorough overlapping transition period, while ensuring continued programme delivery. I am confident that we have been able to apply sound transition management principles to ourselves.”

“I am looking forward to stepping out of a management role, which I have held variously for the past 28 years, to have time to focus on two areas: finding ways to better connect the world of practice to the realm of ideas, and to build change-maker and adaptive leadership capabilities in the next generation of development practitioners.”

The EDP Board thanks Andrew, the management and staff of the EDP as well its partners and stakeholders for a seamless leadership transition that has strengthened its offering and positions the EDP for growth in the coming years.

Author: Kate Ribet – Issued by Western Cape Economic Development Partnership

14 Febuary 2023 Media Release: Garden Route Growth and Development Strategy Implementation Plan now in place

Media Release: Garden Route Growth and Development Strategy Implementation Plan now in place

For immediate release
14 February 2023

Garden Route District Municipality (GRDM) Council approved the Garden Route Growth and Development Strategy Implementation Plan on 30 January 2023. The implementation plan has been completed through consultation workshops with stakeholder groups for each of the seven priority focus areas in the Garden Route Growth and Development Strategy (GRG&DS).

The Garden Route District Municipality in partnership with all spheres of government, the business community and key community organisations developed a Growth and Development Strategy 2040 (GRG&DS) which was adopted by Council on 30 March 2021.

A formal partnership agreement was entered into with the Western Cape Economic Development Partnership (WCEP) to develop the GRG&DS, in collaboration with the GRDM. The agreement also includes the compilation of Cluster Implementation Plans, based on the following seven(7) strategic focus areas:

  • A Water Secure Future
  • A Circular Economy
  • Resilient Agriculture
  • Sustainable Tourism
  • Supporting Wellbeing and Resilience
  • A connected economy: Transport and Rural-urban integration and ICT
  • Sustainable Local Energy Transition

Click here, to download the implementation plan here.
Click here, to download the Growth and Development Strategy.

By starting off the practical work, a range of workshops, facilitated by the Western Cape Economic Development Partnership (WCEDP), took place from 11 – 15 July 2022, to develop implementation plans for each of the seven strategic priorities as identified in the GRG&DS.

The Garden Route Economic Recovery Plan containing interventions, as well as initiatives identified in the GDS, were formed the basis from which the implementation plans were developed.

Dedicated clusters have been established through which catalytic projects, tasks and identified activities will be executed.

The GRDM in collaboration local B-Municipalities, National and Provincial Government, agencies and the private sector at a later stage, form part of these working clusters. Relevant stakeholders per strategic priority were also identified as key members of the specific clusters.

The implementation of the GRG&DS is crucial to ensure the impact it will have on the region, through partnerships and collaboration. The implementation of the plan will happen over the next 18 years and is linked to the performance agreement of the Executive Manager: Planning and Economic Development.