Examining the challenges facing small businesses in South Africa

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The National Development Plan (NDP) sets out several ambitious goals for the small to medium enterprise (SME) sector – including a target for 90% of employment opportunities to be created by this sector by 2030. The NDP envisions the South African economy growing by at least 5.4% growth per year over the next 15 years, to treble in size – and identifies the SME sector as a pivotal player in driving this growth. Yet despite government’s commitment to growing and supporting the country’s SMEs, these firms continue to face an extremely hostile business environment, including lack of skilled staff, burdensome regulations, tough local economic conditions, lack of finance and the high costs associated with employing staff.

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