Johannesburg - The government's endeavour to stimulate SME (small and microenterprise) development is not achieving the desired results.
This is according to a study on development problems and
prospects of SMEs in the Tshwane Metropolitan area,
conducted by the Bureau of Market Research (BMR) of the University of South Africa (Unisa) and Kagiso Trust Consultancy.
SMEs are still constrained by various factors ranging from a
lack of access to information, capital, training and other types of enterprise development resources and facilities to poor regulation and control of street trading and crime.
"Shortage of funds should not necessarily be interpreted as a
lack of access to funds," the report said.
"Bad debt (poor payment of customers) and small profit margins
(as a result of overtrading) create the perception among SME owners that shortage of funds is their major problem.
"Further findings of the study corroborate the fact that the
access to financing is not a major constraint and that the
financial system is indeed accessible to the majority of SMEs."
Security issues were a serious concern for SMEs, not least
because they impact negatively on their profitability.
Just more than one in every three businesses (36.4 %) were
victims of crime during the period 1999 to June 2001.
In areas such as the Pretoria CBD and Mamelodi almost one in
every two businesses experienced crime during the 1999 to June 2001 period.
"The general picture emanating from the past two years is that
all forms of crime against SMEs are showing an upward trend in