Government has decided to merger a number of parastatals including those that deal with issues of entrepreneurial development in the country. During his recent televised address, President Mokgweetsi Masisi said over the years the number of state owned entities (SOEs) has grown and this has had a cumulative impact on the running costs of Government as well as on the efficiency and effectiveness of the Public Sector as a whole.
“In this regard, several existing SOEs will be restructured, an exercise that will be characterized by mergers intended to remove duplication and overlaps of mandates and operations as well as the bringing in of strategic private sector partners to help revitalise and develop selected SOEs,” Masisi said.
He added some of these changes involving the SOEs will require amendments to or the repealing of existing legislation, which will inevitably take some time. In the meantime, actions that do not require statutory reforms will be implemented without delay.
As a result, to enhance the implementation of the mandate of this portfolio responsibility, the Botswana Savings Bank and the Botswana Accountancy College will be privatised as a value to private sector growth.
In addition to the above, a strategic private sector partner will be brought in to help revitalise and develop the National Development Bank (NDB) to focus on its core mandate of being an agricultural bank, including taking on agricultural sector financing operations currently handled by the Citizen Entrepreneurship Development Agency (CEDA).
“It is through this Ministry that we will unlock opportunities for new, high-growth companies in the private sector and youth employment among other citizen empowerment attributes. The Ministry of Entrepreneurship will identify new sectors in the global export product space that we can successfully grow in Botswana, resulting in significant job creation for our youth while also driving the much-needed export diversification.
The successful implementation of this new portfolio responsibility will leverage on the merging of CEDA and Local Enterprise Authority (LEA) into one entity, which will provide broad-based support to micro, small and medium enterprises (SMMEs).
viii. Ministry of Communications, Knowledge and Technology. As we head towards attaining our aspiration of transforming into a knowledge-based economy, this portfolio responsibility will be the vehicle for facilitating that process.
“It will be further responsible for digitization which has the immense potential to unlock and enable high productivity amongst our people. It is a foregoing imperative that Botswana and Batswana keep up with the global village that runs on the wheels of digitization and that they even go an extra mile through ground breaking innovations.
“The Botswana Digital and Innovation Hub will be merged with the Botswana Institute of Technology,
Research and Innovation (BITRI) to remove existing duplication and overlaps of mandates and operations.
- Ministry of Agriculture continues to be the mainstay of our economy in terms of food production and food security.
The Botswana Meat Commission (BMC) and the Botswana Agricultural Marketing Board (BAMB) are critical players in the economy, therefore strategic partners from the private sector will be brought in to assist Government to develop them to their full potential. Banyana (Pty) Ltd will be wound up, and ownership of the farms transferred directly to Government.”