Why does it make sense to support local trade? Here are three top reasons.
Globalisation makes it easy to gain access to building materials, systems and products from all over the world, but procuring overseas products is to the detriment of local industries. WALLS & ROOFS got the professional perspective of Gavin Mageni, head of the SABS Design Institute, and his top reasons for supporting local trade.
1. Economic growth
The notion of globalisation and free trade exacerbate the dilemma of regressing local economic growth and local economic participation. The time has come for us to not just protect our industries, but to understand that buying local stimulates local economic growth and job creation.
Local manufacturing provides much-needed stimulus for economic transformation, local job creation and the increase of local manufacturing capability. One of the major advantages for buyers is our country’s ability to manage safety risks in terms of quality.
It is true that an international company’s manufacturing processes might be deemed greener than that of our local counterparts. However, sustainability is a three-tier process that needs to be managed to create a meaningful balance. Here I refer to the King III view of people, planet and profits.
Especially from a South African perspective, it is essential to produce environmentally friendly local products (taking into account water saving, reduction in material use, etc.) that ensure the sustainability of the organisation and ultimately the economy.
3. Social responsibility
Considering our economic growth constraints and continued unemployment and poverty, procuring local has a huge social imperative. Creating and supporting new local industries that take control of the full production and beneficiation value chain has become the most important turnaround strategy for our country. The products and services that we are importing could and should be produced locally.