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Small Business Acts : Catalyseurs de l’entrepreneuriat africain

Blogs 06/06/2017

Par Jean-Michel Sévérino et Jérémy Hajdenberg ,co-auteurs d’Entreprenante Afrique


L’Afrique n’est pas différente des autres continents : le dynamisme économique africain repose comme ailleurs en très grande partie sur les PME. La nouvelle classe d’entrepreneurs africains ayant émergé depuis dix à vingt ans apporte avec audace et innovation des réponses durables aux besoins d’un continent dont les économies sont encore fragiles.

Parallèlement, la situation démographique de l’Afrique s’annonce comme un défi. 133 millions il y a dix ans, les 15-24 ans sont aujourd’hui 172 millions et seront 246 millions en 2020. Alors que 74 millions d’emplois devront être créés d’ici là afin que le taux de chômage des jeunes évite simplement d’augmenter, 72% des jeunes Africains se disent attirés par l’entrepreneuriat.

Face à cette génération de bâtisseurs en train d’émerger, il est nécessaire d’aller plus loin dans le soutien à cette dynamique entrepreneuriale africaine génératrice de croissance économique mais aussi de lien social, tant au sein de l’entreprise que dans les communautés et l’environnement dans lequel elle s’inscrit.

Le soutien aux PME se concrétise bien sûr à travers diverses mesures juridiques, économiques ou techniques, mais il s’agit plus fondamentalement, pour les gouvernants africains, d’opérer maintenant un choix de société pour le futur en donnant un réel élan politique en direction de l’entrepreneuriat local.

Les PME sont souvent les victimes d’une économie chancelante et d’une puissance politique qui faillit à sa mission d’encadrement de cette dernière. Des aléas tels que les coupures d’électricité, la lenteur administrative et la corruption, ainsi que les retards de paiement peuvent mettre en péril la trésorerie d’une entreprise par exemple, et parfois sa survie même.

Lisez le blog complet sur Development Matters

What’s standing in the way of South Africa’s entrepreneurs?

Blogs 02/06/2017

By Talitha Bertelsmann-Scott, Head : Economic Diplomacy Programme, and the entire Economic Diplomacy Programme team, South African Institute of International Affairs (SAIIA)


Industrialisation is a key driver of sustainable development. It creates jobs, adds value and promotes trade through greater integration into global value chains. At the same time, entrepreneurship and small and medium enterprises (SMEs) are critical to every economy by creating jobs and innovative goods, promoting a competitive environment and economic growth, and facilitating income distribution. The South African government recognises the need for entrepreneurship and SMEs’ engagement with industrialisation efforts to address some of the key socio-economic challenges in the country, particularly poverty, inequality and unemployment. However, South African entrepreneurs still face a number of constraints that hinder greater participation in industrialisation efforts. So, what are the roadblocks standing in the way of entrepreneurs?

During the apartheid era, the domestic economy was protected, relying primarily on capital intensive minerals for export. Diversification into other industrial sectors was limited, and apartheid legislation stymied the growth of black-owned businesses. This led to widespread unemployment, inequality and ultimately low levels of competitiveness and productivity.

Post-1994, the South African government’s primary goal was to reverse isolation and low growth and to signal openness to the world. Yet, changing the institutionalised structure of the economy has proven difficult. Industrial policy post-1994 focused on trade liberalisation and export promotion. This meant reducing tariffs and signing free trade agreements (FTAs) and bilateral investment treaties (BITs). Policy makers gradually began to raise concerns that fully liberalising trade might hinder industrial development through competition with industrialised countries. The current industrial strategy aims not only to promote exports but also to deepen localisation in labour intensive industries. It is still too early to know whether South Africa’s current industrialisation strategy has been able to balance liberalisation and protectionism.

At the same time, the business environment has further hindered South Africa’s industrial entrepreneurs. The World Economic Forum’s (WEF) Global Competitiveness Index (GCI), measuring the competitiveness landscape of 138 economies, ranked South Africa 45th in the 2016/2017 index. While larger companies can rely on economies of scale to overcome some of these challenges, all businesses, including entrepreneurs and SMEs, are affected by the overall environment. How?

Read the full blog on Development Matters

 

Theme

Theme analysis by
country and year


Previous themes

2017

Entrepreneurship and industrialisation

2016

Sustainable Cities and Structural Transformation

2015

Regional development and spatial inclusion

2014

Global Value Chains and Africa's Industrialisation

2013

Structural Transformation and Natural Resources

2012

Promoting Youth Employment

Read more
2011

Africa and its Emerging Partners

Read more
2010

Public Resource Mobilisation and Aid in Africa

2009

Innovation and ICT in Africa

Read more

Theme

Theme analysis by
country and year


Previous themes

2017

Entrepreneurship and industrialisation

2016

Sustainable Cities and Structural Transformation

2015

Regional development and spatial inclusion

2014

Global Value Chains and Africa's Industrialisation

2013

Structural Transformation and Natural Resources

2012

Promoting Youth Employment

Read more
2011

Africa and its Emerging Partners

Read more
2010

Public Resource Mobilisation and Aid in Africa

2009

Innovation and ICT in Africa

Read more
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Unlock the potential of African entrepreneurs for accelerating Africa’s industrial transformation, says the African Economic Outlook 2017

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AfricanEconomicOutlook.org  offers comprehensive and comparable data and analysis of 54 African economies.