LNDC lauds par­tic­i­pants at Source Africa

Lesotho Times - - Business - Retha­bile Pitso

LE­SOTHO Na­tional De­vel­op­ment Cor­po­ra­tion (LNDC) Chief Ex­ec­u­tive Of­fi­cer Kele­bone Leisanyane has com­mended lo­cal com­pa­nies for par­tic­i­pat­ing at the Source Africa 2015 in Cape Town, South Africa which he said helped cre­ate syn­er­gies to bol­ster the man­u­fac­tur­ing sec­tor.

The an­nual show, which was held from 9 to 11 June 2015, is the most im­por­tant an­nual pan-african tex­tile, cloth­ing, and footwear trade event on the in­ter­na­tional cal­en­dar. It is meant to fos­ter link­ages be­tween buy­ers, man­u­fac­tur­ers, and sup­pli­ers to en­sure in­vest­ment into the man­u­fac­tur­ing sec­tor in Africa thereby ac­cel­er­at­ing job-creation.

The event is also meant to show that African tex­tile, ap­parel and footwear man­u­fac­tur­ers can com­pete with the rest of the world on price, qual­ity and stan­dards. It brings to­gether man­u­fac­tur­ers, sup­pli­ers and ser­vice providers, en­abling African and in­ter­na­tional buy­ers to ex­am­ine a wide ar­ray of prod­ucts and ser­vices.

The Le­sotho pav­il­ion at the show housed five lo­cal tex­tile and footwear com­pa­nies, For­mosa Tex­tiles, Hippo Knit­ting, Spring­field, Ba­sotho Leisurewear, Luqi’s In­vest­ments and Mauri Gar­ments. Up to 28 Ba­sotho-owned medium-sized com­pa­nies also ex­hib­ited their footwear, men’s and ladies fash­ion wear as well as ac­ces­sories and work wear. Le­sotho Ex­press rep­re­sented the ser­vices sec­tor.

Mr Leisanyane lauded the lo­cal com­pa­nies which par­tic­i­pated at the event, adding that the cor­po­ra­tion recog­nised the sig­nif­i­cant role in­dus­try plays in job creation.

He said the com­pa­nies par­tic­i­pa­tion was im­por­tant since it came at a “crit­i­cal time” af­ter the United States govern­ment had shown more com­mit­ment to en­hanc­ing the re­gion’s in­dus­try through the African Growth and Op­por­tu­nity Act (AGOA) and sup­port for events like Source Africa.

AGOA is a leg­is­la­tion ap­proved by the Amer­i­can Congress in May 2000 to as­sist sub-sa­ha­ran economies and im­prove re­la­tions be­tween the con­ti­nent and the US. The law pro­vides trade pref­er­ences for quota and duty-free en­try into the United States for cer­tain goods, no­tably tex­tile prod­ucts and is due to ex­pire in Septem­ber. While the US Se­nate has re­cently passed leg­is­la­tion to ex­tend the Act for another 10 years, it still has to go through the House of Rep­re­sen­ta­tives.

The leg­is­la­tion has played a big role in sus­tain­ing Le­sotho’s tex­tile in­dus­try, which is the sin­gle big­gest pri­vate sec­tor em­ployer with ap­prox­i­mately 39 000 work­ers.

Said Mr Leisanyane: Le­sotho’s par­tic­i­pa­tion at Source Africa in the past two years has not only been help­ful in terms of se­cur­ing more or­ders for lo­cal man­u­fac­tur­ers, but also by ex­pos­ing them to the so­phis­ti­ca­tion of prod­ucts man­u­fac­tured in the re­gion and in the con­ti­nent.

“The ex­po­sure that the trade fair pro­vides to our medium Ba­sotho-owned com­pa­nies plays a sig­nif­i­cant role in the ef­forts em­ployed to lo­calise the in­dus­try.”

This year’s event in­cluded a two-day trade ex­hi­bi­tion, African coun­try pavil­ions, and in­ter­na­tional busi­ness sem­i­nars with fo­cus on AGOA. Over 1600 de­ci­sion mak­ers had an op­por­tu­nity to view an ex­ten­sive range of prod­ucts and ser­vices from more than 200 ex­hibitors in 2015.

LNDC off­i­cals in­ter­act with del­e­gates at the Source Africa 2015 in Cape Town, South Africa

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