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Khayelitsha and Mitchell’s Plain are both townships that are situated on the Cape Flats in the Western Cape. Khayelitsha means “New Home” in isiXhosa and is reputed to be the largest and fastest-growing township in South Africa. Mitchells Plain situated about 28 km from the Cape Town city center, is one of South Africa's largest residential areas and contains multiple smaller suburbs.
The Chamber's supports local area with development by providing support for:
1. Enterprise development - increasing awareness of opportunities for learning, development and links to expertise.
2. Networking events - enabling members to connect with new customers, suppliers, experts and decision-makers.
3. Business retention and expansion programmes - for firms to express their concerns about issues affecting business in the area, and to steer systematic improvement of their local business environment.
4. Participation in regional sector and value chain development programmes.
Useful City of Cape Town information relevant to the Khaya-Plain Chapter:
- City of Cape Town Industrial survey – including key sector value chains and industrial precincts
- District Plans by City e.g zoning and service provision
The City has produced a number of publications that focus on the industrial areas in Cape Town. The publications cover 26 industrial areas in the city and highlight key facts and figures on the locations, economic activity trends, business’ economic activity, as well as vacant land and buildings.
Against this backdrop, the Cape Chamber of Commerce has created a dedicated Chapter for these two areas called the Khaya-Plain Chapter as it recognises the importance of the Township Economy as well as the need to ensure that the economy of the Western Cape is reflective of all who reside in the province.
The aim of the Khaya-Plain Chapter, at a macro level, is to actively seek to create a platform for township SMMEs based in two of the biggest disadvantaged communities. Informed by research, the Chapter recognises that township entrepreneurs experience the following challenges:
- Access to quality business development support
- Access to markets
- Access to facilities to trade
- Access to financing
The Chapter actively aims to address the abovementioned challenges by adopting an ecosystem approach that allows Chapter Members to leverage partnerships with broader ecosystem partners to improve the livelihoods of SMMEs in currently disadvantaged communities.
Over the years robust partnerships have successfully been built with SEDA, which provides non-financial support, NYDA -grant funding for youth entrepreneurs, and SEFA -blended financing, particularly the TREP program. Furthermore, collaborations with the private sector such as the law firm ENSafrica provides valuable insights and specialist workshops on legal aspects influencing the Township Economy.
In addition, collaborations with institutions of higher learning such as False Bay College provides valuable means for SMMEs to thrive and grow sustainably.
The Chapter aims to offer guidance and support to Township SMMEs by encouraging these SMMEs to take their destiny into their own hands and to grow their businesses sustainably.