Who Is Responsible for Exploiting Our Start-Up Entrepreneurs?

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As we all know the promotion of small and medium-scale enterprises is a top priority of our government. We also know that President Pohamba has called for more effective work from the public sector. Just now I experienced another example that some civil servants obviously do not take their own government seriously. A Namibian entrepreneur from the North Central Regions wanted to start a manufacturing business. He invested a lot in preparing a business plan, which has impressed the financing institutions. As a first step to start his business he needed to reserve and then register a company name. The costs are N$5 and N$25, however, the required revenue stamps are “since months out of stock”. After spending hours searching in Windhoek for the required amounts of revenue stamps, he finally had to purchase the nearest amounts available, i.e. N$10 (instead of N$5) and N$30 (instead of N$25). The unjustified extra payment is certainly a small amount and one has to assume that every entrepreneur pays the cost increase of 100% and 20%, respectively, and therefore nobody cares to print new revenue stamps. However, such “hidden cost increases” are not acceptable and are certainly not in line with the government’s policy. Dr. R. Trede Managing Director, Development Consultants for Southern Africa (DECOSA).