Growing the SMME manufacturing economy of South Africa: Evidence from Gauteng Province

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19 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This article aims to present findings of research concerning the support needs for growth and enhancing the competitive performance of groups of established and emerging SMMEs in Gauteng Province, South Africa's economic heartland. Following the official definitions as applied in South Africa's national white paper on small business, the term 'established' SMME refers to an enterprise that is owned and managed by white entrepreneurs and the term 'emerging' SMME refers to an enterprise that is owned and managed by black entrepreneurs (South Africa 1995). In this study, the analysis covers the spectrum of the SMME manufacturing economy in South Africa and encompasses both established and emerging enterprises. The findings show the support needs and performance of 102 established and 30 emerging manufacturing enterprises in Gauteng Province. The established manufacturers represent a mix of formal small- and medium-sized enterprises whereas the group of emerging manufacturers is largely comprised of small enterprise and a segment of micro-enterprise. Three major sections of material are given. For background a brief overview is presented of previous research on the factors or determinants affecting the success of small-scale manufacturing SMMEs particularly in the developing world. Special attention is on issues surrounding the implementation of appropriate support systems for manufacturing SMMEs. In the second section the discussion turns to the South African case study dealing with the policy context and issues of research methodology. Finally the results are examined of 132 interviews undertaken during 1999 with a representative cross-section of SMME manufacturers in Gauteng.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)267-291
Number of pages25
JournalJournal of Contemporary African Studies
Volume19
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2001
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Development
  • Political Science and International Relations

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