Buy local and help revive Cape Town economy
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To help businesses that felt the brunt of the Covid-19 pandemic shutdown and restrictions, a new initiative has been launched to build a robust local manufacturing sector and create a surge of jobs.
The "Made in Cape Town '' movement is a collective effort by several public, private and Non Profit Organisations (NPO) aimed at celebrating and shining the spotlight on products made locally.
It is managed by the Craft and Design Institute (CDI) in partnership with the City of Cape Town’s Enterprise and Investment Department.
The organisations described it as a demonstration of the strength that could be achieved when public and private entities work together to support the reopening of the economy.
Group CEO of the CDI Erica Elk said: “The primary goal, at this stage, is to unearth and showcase what Cape Town has created. And to encourage locals to support locally made products.
“The ‘Made in Cape Town’ movement provides the CDI with an additional channel to connect local businesses with economic opportunities that will help them recover. It speaks to the objectives of several of our other projects, one being the RE: SOLVE Challenge, which enables innovative entrepreneurs to take their first steps in prototyping new local products and services.”
The initiative is going public ahead of the festive season to drive the interest and support of small businesses.
Elk said: “We are calling on the public and local businesses to tell us what excites them about Cape Town: is it a locally made product? A food or beverage they associate with the Mother City, or an invention or company that was born here? A unique service, event or adventure? The list of possibilities is endless.”
“The Made in Cape Town message amplifies the City’s own economic initiatives to boost the economy and galvanise both local businesses and supporters within all Cape Town communities,” added mayco member for Economic Opportunities, James Vos.
He said the City launched several programmes to drive the economy last month, including a 200-step Inclusive Economic Growth Strategy to make opportunities more accessible and create jobs.
Other recent City initiatives included plans to safely welcome visitors over the festive season.
"This ties into Cape Town Tourism’s new international Find Your Freedom campaign, which converts potential travellers in key source markets to actual visitors to the Mother City, and the Captivating Cape Town campaign showing the accessibility and affordability of the city," said Vos.
He said the initiatives were aimed at assisting the development of community tourism to support local businesses.
“In partnership with the CDI, we are shining the spotlight on the many quality goods and services that originate in the Mother City and encouraging both locals and visitors alike to come forward to say what they love about Cape Town. This is an opportunity to endorse Cape Town as a destination and to show our love for local by buying local,” said Vos.
The first private sector entity to pledge its support for the Made in Cape Town movement was the V&A Waterfront who, with the CDI, was implementing a Retail Readiness Living programme.
Supporting small creative businesses in the Watershed, RRLL provides training and mentorship to foster retail expertise.
Craft producers located at the Guga S’Thebe Centre in Langa are participating in the programme.
“All these speak to celebrating local products and services,” said Elk.
“As the CDI, we are excited by the Made in Cape Town movement because it will help, support and promote South African products and services – which is what we need to drive our recovery,” she added.
The public is urged to provide input via social media platforms, namely Facebook (@MadeNCapeTown) and Instagram madeincapetown).