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Private sector has all hands on deck supporting government's coronavirus battle

24 March 2020 6:55 PM
Tags:
National Small Medium and Micro Enterprises SMME
SMEs
small business
pitanya
Sipho Pityana, the President of Business Unity South Africa, on big steps taken with government.

All shops and businesses will from Friday be closed - except pharmacies, laboratories, banks, financial and payment services, supermarkets, petrol stations and medical care providers.

The Money Show's Bruce Whitfield wanted to know how we can be sure that the medicine does not to kill the patient. The medicine for this thing is - cut off its supply links. Don't allow it to transfer from person to person.

If we don''t get this thing under control in three weeks, the lockdown surely has to continue.

It shows the importance of getting this done hard and fast.

Sipho Pityana, President of Business Unity South Africa, explains how business is working with government.

First focus for us was health - making sure our capacity to respond to this crisis draws not only from government resources but that the private sector in its length and breadth, provides its infrastructure, expertise and resources. When I say that, I know that most people think about health providers like your hospitals and medical aid and pharmaceuticals. But companies like mine, AngloGold Ashanti, have made available two of its hospitals to government should it need it. Many of us have health departments in our own environment. This is the most impressive collaborative and advanced aspect in our collaboration with government.

Sipho Pityana, President - Business Unity South Africa

Government has been very deliberate in its interventions here. This is unchartered waters. But Government draws on the resources of local and international people to enable it to make intelligent decisions. We feel that, as business, we can line up behind it. The key focus for us now is, we are worried about the implications on the economy and the social dimensions of this thing. We have nine working groups drawn from different sectors. Security of supply chains, import substitution, what happens to SMEs - if no interventions are made. We could very well have serious decimation of SMEs in the next 100 days. So we need to put certain interventions in place to make sure we mitigate the impact.

Sipho Pityana, President - Business Unity South Africa
Picture: 123rf.com

Listen to the entire interview about all the interventions planned, below.

Get the 10 most-read articles of the week from Bruce Whitfield’s The Money Show, emailed to you every Friday morning.


24 March 2020 6:55 PM
Tags:
National Small Medium and Micro Enterprises SMME
SMEs
small business
pitanya

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