Defining the economy: The economy is about how wealth is created, distributed and consumed. It concerns the ways in which a country produces, distributes and consumes the tangible, material commodities of life. It is also about how the proceeds or income from these activities are distributed amongst those who contribute towards them: businesses, workers, the state and the whole of society. Every person affects the economy in some way and we are all affected by it.
Economics attempts to answer questions such as:
What is produced and how?
Why does a particular country produce particular goods and services?
How are the natural resources used?
How does a country earn and spend its money?
How are its people employed, and what technology do they use in their work?
What is the relationship between these things and the wealth and poverty of different communities?
From the preceding, ED as a development approach is based on the central idea of local stakeholder mobilisation, building the competitive advantages of the locality and enabling local role-players to capture and exploit market opportunities.
Throughout the world, local governments are being confronted by an increasingly competitive global economy that is rapidly embracing market-oriented economic systems. At the same time, local governments are experiencing democratic reforms and greater decentralization passed down from higher levels of government. This means that local governments and communities now have greater opportunity, and growing responsibility, to take control of their future.
Economic Development (ED) is an approach to sustainable economic development that encourages residents of local communities to work together to stimulate local economic activity that will result in, inter alia, an improvement in the quality of life for all in the local community.
The purpose of ED is to build up the economic capacity of a local area i.e. Knysna Municipal area to improve its economic future and the quality of life for all. It is a process by which public, business and nongovernmental sector partners work collectively to create better conditions for economic growth and employment generation.
Economic Development in Knysna: The next decade represents a critical period of change for the Knysna economy. Increasingly, we will be affected by major long-term global trends including: intensified competition from emerging economies like China and India; rising energy costs; ICT-driven disruptive innovations; and demographic changes, especially ageing and the pace of population growth.
The community, industry and governments, together, face a range of opportunities and challenges – only by working more closely together can we most effectively address them. Knysna Municipality is dedicated to ensure that a conducive environment is created to promote economic growth and development of all residents and businesses. This key objective will be lead by the Economic Development Department who focuses on promoting economic growth, job creation, reducing poverty and monitoring inequalities. The department does this through a number of projects and programmes, such as Investment Promotion, Entrepreneurship Development Programmes, Sector Development Strategies, informal trading and business support facilities framework and specific ED interventions such as the timber cluster initiative and the Comprehensive Rural development Programme in Karatara and Rheenendal amongst others.
Currently the Knysna Local Economic Strategy is being revised as part of the Integrated Strategic Development Framework (ISDF) conceptualisation. This strategic working document will provide a roadmap to enable economic development taking into consideration the natural environment and its challenges and resources as well as the spat ial implications thereof. The focus will be on ensuring that Knysna has a economic future and that investments are made in human capital, physical infrastructure and leading and emerging enterprises.
ED offers Knysna Municipality, the businesses in Knysna and the local communities the opportunity to work together to improve the local economy. It focuses on enhancing competitiveness, increasing sustainable growth and ensuring that growth is inclusive.
ED encompasses a range of disciplines including physical planning, economics and marketing. It also incorporates many local government and private sector functions including environmental planning, business development, infrastructure provision, real estate development and finance. The vision for ED in Knysna is that of robust and inclusive local economy that will take advantage of local opportunities, address local needs and contribute to national development objectives such as economic growth and poverty eradication.
Contact Manager Economic Development:
Ms Ilse van Schalkwyk
Telephone: +27 (0)44 302 6358