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Shopsteward Volume 27: Special Bulletin

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Media Centre  |  COSATU Press Statements

Statement on the "Buy local, Buy South African" Campaign

6 December 1999

Today COSATU is launching an important campaign in our endeavors to fight unemployment: the "Buy local, Buy South African" campaign. We will rally our 1.8 million members (who support at- least 10 dependants) and all patriots to purchase of goods produc ed in South Africa so that, together, we can help boost the domestic industry and help thus to fight unemployment and create jobs in the country. This translates into more than 18 million participants in the campaign. Local producers who have closene ss to location and all the advantages of quick delivery can offer an opportunity to satisfy basic needs of local consumers and help to create jobs.

This campaign will induce the countryís economic growth through a focused domestic spending programme - the purchase of locally produced goods.

COSATU believes that the country needs policies that encourage the use of locally manufactured raw materials, and grant preferences for companies who are expanding production for the domestic and the export market.

Retailers should actively source locally, and be required to disclose the proportion of their stocks which are locally sourced, as a means of encouraging the 'buy local' campaign.

As agreed in the Presidential Jobsí Summit, we call for the speedy introduction of a Label of Origin requirement on all consumer goods sold in South Africa so that the public can make informed purchasing decisions.

The Summitís declaration called for the label to be awarded to "quality products and services produced by firms which comply to minimum standards as regards environmental responsibility and labour standards and whose products and services embody suffic ient local content (including a factor for SADC inputs)"

We call on all consumers to buy South African goods during this festive season and help thus, to protect a job. Declare this festive season a "Buy local, Buy South Africa" season! . We believe every patriot should support goods made by their fellow wo rkers in order to strengthen local industry. This means that as we all go out to do our Christmas shopping, we should be mindful of this campaign and strive to buy products that were made in this country

In doing so, you will keep someone in a job, more especially at a time when workers have received a battering through retrenchments.

We should view this campaign as a step in building a strong independent South Africa which takes care of its own citizens and at the same time is striving to build the region in the context of international worker solidarity and job creation.