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BotswanaPost urged to advertise stamps at airports

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The Minister of Environment Wildlife and Tourism, Tshekedi Khama has urged the Botswana Post to start advertising Botswana’s heritage through stamps at the local airports.

Speaking at the BotswanaPost’s new “save Botswana Vultures’ stamp launch this Monday, Khama said instead of walking into Sir Siretse Khama International Airport and seeing billboards advertisements of international companies, BotswanaPost should rather take the lead in advertising its stamps on Botswana.

I call on you to start enlarging your stamps and putting them on billboards at these airports and other advertising areas. Ga re batle go bona bo Komatsu le tse dingwe re tsena ka airport ya rona. Show that you are proud of our own national heritage,” he said.

Khama said he shall motivate in his own way that the Post office continues to be supported, adding that it would be recognition of the valuable and strategic support and positioning that BotswanaPost plays in the economy of this country.

“Our Ministries (MEWT, and Transport and Communications Ministry (MTC)) need to identify where we can incorporate BotswanaPost and MTC in the fabric of these activities, to ensure maximum impact and mutual benefit to our respective mandates.

It is through efforts of BotswanaPost, through its Philately programme that we will be able to brand and communicate about our unique and rich heritage, our diverse bio-environment. It is a story worth telling, and stamps are certainly playing an active and excellent role in that regard,” Khama said.

He went onto add that Vultures have a very central role in maintaining the delicate balance of the world ecosystems. They play an active role in the food chain, aiding the cleaning of the environment ensuring that the process of circulating nutrients back to the earth continues.

It is through man’s activities that these fine magnificent birds are facing extinction. The Post Office, he said is a key component of the communication eco-system, facing the same challenges.

BotswanaPost Board Chairman, Polokoetsile Motau revealed that, one area that has seen remarkable growth in the past two years is Philately. “In the past, a year could go by with at most one stamp issue being released and at times none at all.

This means that we have missed both business opportunities and our moral duty as a party to a group of Botswana national heritage conservationists. In the last two years, the revamped philately programme managed to release five stamp issues in a year,” he said.

According to Motau, this stamp programme is part of the ‘Reinvigorating Philately’ initiative which aims at positioning BotswanaPost Philatelic Bureau as one of the best in the international market.

He added that they are  not only happy to use their stamps for conservationism efforts but also as a platform to enable the local talented artists across the nation to leverage their skills to  sell the beauty that is  Botswana, and in the process gain a meaningful living.

The vulture stamp marks the fourth Commemorative Issue of the year 2015, after Okavango Delta Heritage Listing, Abstract Art in Botswana and African Buffalo in Botswana and followed by Vervet Monkey in Botswana.

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Matambo calls on financial sector to pick GDP

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Finance Minister, kenneth Matambo

Finance Minister Kenneth Matambo has announced that government is committed to support financial service sector to prop up the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP).

Currently contributing over 13 percent to GDP, Matambo said the sector has potential to increase its share. “Hence government’s interest in the sector,” said Matambo addressing delegates at the inaugural Botswana Insurance Holdings Limited (BIHL), Global Financial Summit.

The country has built a strong, resilient and fast growing financial sector underpinned by a robust regulatory framework. The finance minister who is expected to step down next year, noted that government’s commitment to the financial service sector has this year been buttressed by a number of laws passed in July relating to money laundering activities.

In addition, Matambo said the continued investment in the development of information, communication and technologies (ICTs) backbone infrastructure is also to support local banks’ rising appetite for online services.

The Minister said the country remains committed to maintaining micro-economic stability to spur private sector participation in the economy. “Our vision is to become a high income country by 2036,” said Matambo, challenging the private sector to step forward and help government to develop the country, bemoaning the low levels of financial inclusion and shallow domestic capital markets.

He said the private sector should come up with more initiatives to develop further the local capital markets. The Minister’s sentiments were also shared by Martin Davies, Managing Director for Emerging Markets and Africa at Deloitte who has challenged the country to start dealing with its low manufacturing value add.

“How do we start to diversify beyond the single commodity economy,” quizzed Davies, adding that manufacturing increase is vital for low inequality across the country.

“Inequality results in bad public policy, as the state starts to believe and think they have to intervene more,” said Davies, highlighting that the country needs to move away from the absolute concept of state drive growth. Meanwhile, minister Matambo has applauded the private sector for leading economic dialogue in the country through events such as the BIHL Global Finance Summit.

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First Lady advises women entrepreneurs

Keikantse Lesemela

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First lady, Neo Masisi

First Lady, Neo Masisi has urged women entrepreneurs to bring change in the economic development of the country and the rest of Africa.

Speaking during the Lioness Lean in Africa breakfast on Friday, Masisi said women entrepreneurs are remarkable engines of economic growth and job creation. “I believe women entrepreneurs hold incredible potential and credentials on the continent because Africa has the highest percentage of women entrepreneurs in the world.

It is projected that millions of much needed jobs will be created over the next decade and these will be created predominantly through small businesses which are mostly run by women,” said Masisi.She highlighted that women entrepreneurs are also the most powerful engine for equitably distributing growth and they are also solutions for addressing inequality on the continent.

“It is a proven fact that for many generations, women understand the simple concept of barter and commerce. These are the role models of our past and our present and they will continue to inspire new generations to do more for business to grow,” she said.

The Lioness Lean In Breakfast Series brings together inspirational and successful women entrepreneurs to share, inspire and connect with the next generation of great women-led start-ups.

The platform is based on a breakfast networking and speaker presentation format, which has been organized in locations across the African continent for the past year by Lionesses of Africa, empowering over one million women entrepreneurs across the continent.

Stanbic Bank Botswana Head of Personal Markets, Omphemetse Dube said they are pleased to bring the Lionesses of Africa Lean In platform to Botswana once again to bring together women entrepreneurs in the country and help to nurture their growth further.

“Botswana is blessed with a number of thriving female entrepreneurs, and the potential for the next generation of talent is strong. Platforms such as this are therefore paramount in growing the cause and we as a bank are proud to help champion that movement further,” said Dube.

Founder and CEO of Lionesses of Africa,Melanie Hawken noted that Gaborone is a growing and exciting centre for women’s entrepreneurship in Africa. “This is a must-attend event for women entrepreneurs in the country as it gives them the opportunity to hear the inspiring entrepreneurial stories of women who are building great businesses here,” she said.

The annual Lionesses of Africa event allows entrepreneurs to benefit from the insights and advice of women entrepreneurs who have seen and experienced it all and to also provide an excellent opportunity for networking.

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