Minister of industrialisation Lucia Iipumbu has again signalled the government’s intention to tackle the systemic inefficient bureaucracy in the public service, urging her ministry’s staff to serve masses with dedication and commitment.
Addressing her ministry’s staff virtually on Friday, Iipumbu also called on government agencies under her ministry to start delivering on their mandate to develop and manage Namibia’s economic regulatory framework, promote economic growth that attracts trade and investment and expand on the country’s industrial base.
“I want to see NIDA, BIPA, NaCC and NSI business and strategic plans, and I want to see how you are meeting your goals and objectives as agencies of this ministry,” Iipumbu said
Iipumbu further called on the NSI to start working on its financial prudence of resources by both government and their revenues.
“Let us deliver on our mandate to develop and manage Namibia’s economic regulatory framework, promote economic growth that attracts trade and investment, and expand on the country’s industrial base,” she stressed.
“We need to forge a greater spirit of Namibia first in order to accelerate the economic recovery and growth, which is the greatest challenge we face as government,” she added.
Highlighting the ministry’s success during the financial years, Iipumbu said despite the rough and tough year preceded by Covid- 19 pandemic, they managed to do regional consultations with business communities and informal traders, with a primary focus on the impact of Covid-19.
“We have launched successfully the ‘Buy Namibia Grow Namibia’ Campaign during October 2020, and the second phase of the campaign will most probably start by April 2021, which will incorporate more SMEs to enhance the capability to access retail shelf space,” she said.
Also, she said, the second phase is expected to have regional representation focus on women and Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs). Similarly, she said, the ministry was able to ensure production of 454 894 masks for the most vulnerable members of the society, including pensioners, children receiving disability grants and hospitalised patients in public hospitals.
This exercise, she said, ensured 57 SMEs where contracted and the domestic economy was boosted with a total of N$9.2 million.
Furthermore, she said, the ministry has also, with the support of the EU through the SADC Trade Related Facility, capacitated 45 Namibian firms through the Industrial Upgrading and Modernisation Scheme to a total value of N$11.3 million.
“Working with our development partners, we rolled out the Katutura StartUp Centre,” she added.
During the reporting period, she said the ministry enrolled 120 start-ups, of which 80% are female; we provided 600 Covid-19 start-up grants of N$15 000 each, a total of N$9 million, mostly disbursed to informal Micro Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs).
“We also distributed 1 600 PPE kits to informal economy operators across the 14 regions of our country. We also established, with key partners, the Sustainable Development Goals Impact Facility and disbursed N$2.5 million to 32 entities during December 2020,” she said.