In a bid to tackle spiraling levels of unemployment mainly among the youth, government has decided to tighten and strictly reserve more lines of business for Batswana only.
Amongst the many reserved businesses dealership of grey imported vehicles is the latest addition, which is a business, which is dominated by Asians, West Africans and Somalis.
According to Francistown East Member of Parliament, Honest Buti Billy, this move is meant to economically empower locals and have more young people venture into business.
“Some of the business lines now reserved for locals are hair salons, car dealers and selling of import vehicles (commonly known as Fong Kongos), bars, restaurants, filling stations and public transport and haulage,’ pointed out Billy.
“We cannot have foreigners travel thousands of kilometres to Botswana to set up garages to sell imported vehicles and operate petrol stations. When we have Batswana, who have the potential. These are some of the businesses, which our own young people can venture into.”
Billy further indicated this move by government is also to ensure that the country’s economy is controlled by Batswana and benefits as many locals as possible.
The Francistown East legislator however, warned residents in his constituency from fronting for foreigners who are interested in venturing into businesses reserved for locals.
“Some of you here now see it as an opportunity to get brown envelopes from these dishonest investors. I urge you to desist from being used by foreigners, to front for them. Rather this is time for you to stand up and venture into business, build a better future for yourselves and other generations to come,” warned Billy.
“For those foreigners, already in these lines of business, which have now been reserved for Batswana; they will be allowed to trade till the end of their trade licences. Thereafter they would have to make way for locals,” concluded the Member of Parliament.