The Minister for Presidential Affairs and Public Administration Mokgweetsi Masisi has defended the Economic Diversification Drive (EDD) initiative saying it is achieving its goals.
He told parliament this week that since its inception the EDD has led to an investment of well over P1billion in locally produced goods.
To this end, he said, in 2012/2013 a total of goods and services worth P3.42 billion were recorded, out of which P1.84 billion were from local manufactures and suppliers.
The minister pointed out that in the same year a total investment worth over P1 billion was realised generating 1 206 jobs. "These are just some of the successes of the EDD," he said, adding that the initiative is creating job opportunities and economic growth.
He argued that looking at the results recorded the accusation that the EDD has not made progress is not fair. Masisi was responding to a question from the Member of Parliament for Okavango Bagalatia Arone, who wanted to know how government intends to keep people employed, in view of government's decision to downsize the public service, given the failed EDD.
Meanwhile Assistant Minister of Trade and Industry Keletso Rakhudu said the main challenge hindering growth of the economy is the lack of care to prominent sectors of the economy.
"We don't take care of prominent sectors especially the agriculture sector which can contribute to the economy."