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PPC gives to Tlamelong Rehabilitation Centre

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PPC Botswana has invested more than P1 million towards Tlamelong Rehabilitation Centre to support its projects and promote awareness, self reliance and sense of responsibility. Speaking during the horticulture project handover on Thursday, General Manager Tuelo Botlhole said they continue to work with communities in which they operate. He said this was in accord with the country’s national Vision 2036, some of which pillars call for achieving prosperity for all through Sustainable Economic, Human and Social Development.

“PPC Botswana is committed to assisting in the achievement of these national goals. It is for this reason that we have found it fit to partner with the Lady Khama Charitable Trust and the Red Cross to assist in the delivery of this greenhouse facility,” said Botlhole. Botlhole said through PPC donation, Lady Khama Charitable Trust has over the last several years committed to providing assistance to Tlamelong Rehabilitation Centre in building the greenhouse tunnels. The centre has also received a fully-fledged borehole that will sustain the horticultural projects undertaken.

Through the project the centre will produce tomatoes which will be sold to the local supermarkets. “It is our hope that the good harvest that comes out of these greenhouse tunnels will go on to improve the sustainability of this great centre which provides some of the most critical services to our community. “I’m reliably informed that there are already some retailers who are willing to purchase the good produce, a move that will help provide the facility with much-needed cash to address daily needs,” he said. Botlhole said their view is that giving back to the public and community is critical in assisting the development and maintenance of community’s livelihood. He appealed to other corporates to participate in sustainable giving.

“It’s our responsibility to ensure that the causes we give to are able to survive beyond the giving. This is the only way that we can avoid a situation where projects lack longevity and fail to achieve their intended purpose,” he said. Botswana Red Cross Society Secretary General Mabel Koketso said Tlamelong Rehabilitation Centre was established in 1974 with the aim of improving lives of people living with disabilities. “It is also the Centre’s aim to build human resource potential in the community by including people living with disabilities, their families and community members,” she said. Currently the Centre houses 90 trainees who specialise in horticulture or textile training for two years.

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SMEs benefit from Consumer Fair growth

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The Botswana Investment and Trade Centre (BITC) has applauded Botswana Consumer Fair’s continued efforts to improve small to medium enterprises’ linkages.

BITC Chief Executive Officer, Keletsositse Olebile, when opening the fair, said the event has provided interactive forum for both local and foreign exhibitors. He said the shopping show has enabled manufacturers, wholesalers and traders to market their products directly to consumers, an alignment to government’s endeavors.

“As part of government intention, we continually encourage local sourcing by retailers and distributors,” said Olebile who is just few months into his new post. He further celebrated the growth of Botswana Consumer Fair over the years, attributing the expansion to quality of goods displayed at the previous shows.“Improved quality and increased variety of wares increases the interest of the visitors and makes them look forward to returning the following year,” said Olebile.

This year’s exhibitors at the 13th event still running under the banner: ‘It is more than just shopping’ have been drawn from Lesotho, Zambia, Swaziland, South Africa, Nigeria, Ghana, Kenya, Egypt, Japan, India, Tanzania and Zimbabwe.

Consumer Fair is a flagship event for Fairgrounds Holdings and provides a platform for small medium enterprises (SMEs) from the different sectors of the economy to showcase and promote their products and services. In addition, the SMEs are expected to establish long term business linkages and promote local manufactured goods.Fairgrounds Holdings is already optimistic that the Fair immensely contribute to the socio-economic development of the country through supporting SMEs.

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‘Involve SMMEs in standards development’-Minister

Keikantse Lesemela

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Minister of Investment, Trade and Industry, Bogolo Kenewendo appealed to Botswana Bureau of Standards (BOBS) to include the Small, Medium and Micro Enterprises (SMMEs) when developing the standards to improve the sector.

She said the Ministry of Investment, Trade and Industry has identified three areas of focus going forward which are modeled on SMME development, investment promotion and export development apexes. “I would like to implore you to include this sector in standards development processes and assist in improving SMMEs conformity to standards and compliance to technical regulations,” said Kenewendo.

Speaking during the BOBS Technical Committee Members appreciation ceremony on Thursday, Kenewendo explained that the important roles of standards are underpinned by the aspirations and intentions espoused in both diversified export led economic growth and job creation as priority areas. “It goes without saying that the diversification of the economy requires a National Quality Infrastructure and Technical Regulatory Framework that promote competitiveness of Botswana goods and services.”

She also emphasized that an effective National Quality Infrastructure and Technical Regulatory Framework are essential as they provide crucial links to global trade, market access and export competitiveness through their contribution to consumer confidence in product safety, quality and the environment.Since inception in 1997 BOBS has published more than 1700 standards through 48 technical committees across several sectors of the economy; 109 certification licences have been issued against some of these standards. Currently 46 Botswana Standards are being implemented through the standards regulations with a view to protecting the health and safety of consumers as well as protection of the environment.

On her note, BOBS Vice Chairperson of the Standards Council, Professor Edward Dintwa said standards are powerful tools for helping organisations that implement them to realize their potential, have access and compete in the global marketplace. “In this highly competitive and complex world, issues of sustainability and productivity, viewed from economic, environmental and societal perspectives require that businesses must be more efficient in their operations, which can be achieved through the implementation of standards”.

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