Investment is seen as a key pillar for economic development. Investment, particularly private investments, is seen as the engine of growth to stimulate employment, generate foreign exchange earnings, and increase the standard of living and by extension reduce poverty.
It is through investment that the multiplier effect to create opportunities is developed and will serve to empower communities. Using a simplistic example to explain this concept, imagine an investment in an agro processing plant. The investor would have to employ construction workers from the communities to construct the facility. The construction workers will be paid wages, which will be used to purchase items from grocery shops, undertake family obligations and even save some of these wages for future use. Indeed, this one investor has provided opportunities for many within the Community.
Creating opportunities is not reserved for a few persons. Individuals within communities need to come together and tap their creativity and innovation, in an effort to empower themselves. There are many areas for potential investments within communities, the skill is to find these and build on them.
When communities are empowered it not only impacts on their standard of living, but it also impacts on their mental attitude and their overall outlook of life.
Government’s role as an investor is to assist these communities by providing the necessary infrastructure and enabling environment, so that they can achieve the empowerment that is expected of them.
Although it is not directly articulated in this year’s Independence Theme it is understood that it is “The Government, Private Sectors, NGOs, other interest groups and the communities themselves who will create the opportunities for the empowerment of the Communities”. Without all these key players, the empowerment in the Communities will not be far reaching.
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