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STATEMENT BY THE CITY’S MAYORAL COMMITTEE MEMBER FOR ECONOMIC OPPORTUNITIES AND ASSET MANAGEMENT, ALDERMAN JAMES VOS

According to the most recent analysis of the impact of the current national Level 3 lockdown measures, one in six jobs in the Western Cape and one in 12 is at risk nationally. This is why, on behalf of the City of Cape Town, I will again write to the Minister of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs, Minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, to call for the curfew to be changed to save businesses and jobs.

Ten days ago I wrote to Minister Dlamini-Zuma calling for the urgent change to the curfew from 21:00 to 23:00 in a bid to provide more trading hours to the hospitality, manufacturing, retail and SMME sector.

These businesses, while adhering to strict COVID-19 protocols, need every hour to keep their businesses open, retain and create jobs.

Having not yet received a response, I have again written to Minister Dlamini-Zuma to reiterate my call.

In the midst of the possible destruction of an entire industry, I am proud of the resilience shown by the people and businesses of Cape Town. In a testament to this resilience, wineries and businesses are ‘adopting a restaurant’ to help preserve the jobs and livelihoods of the sector.

The Restaurant Rescue Project (#RestaurantRescueProject) is an independent, industry-driven initiative to preserve the gastronomic culture of Cape Town by saving the restaurant sector.

More than 750 direct jobs have already been preserved thanks to the Restaurant Rescue Project.

Each participating restaurant then curates an experience which guests can purchase as a voucher and enjoy one of the many gastronomic experiences that Cape Town is so famous for.

To purchase a voucher from the participating restaurants and wineries buy Restaurant Rescue Voucher here.

If you’d like to partner up as business or winery by ‘adopting a restaurant’ contact alex@radforddale.com.

To date, Capetonians’ dedication to supporting their treasured spots has amounted to a total of R5 031 800, and counting, generated by those who bought restaurant vouchers through the project.

As a caring, economically responsive City, we will also soon be sharing our 10-point programme plan we are taking to address the crisis in the tourism industry.

The City has numerous programmes to help business in Cape Town survive these difficult times. These include:

  • Certain guesthouses and Bed and Breakfast establishments can reclassify as residential properties on a temporary basis to reduce their rates. Apply for help via email: RCC@capetown.gov.za
  • To provide some relief to restaurants the City has provided them with the option to rent the sidewalks in front of their establishments, for outdoor seating, at a reduced rate. Establishments are encouraged to visit https://www.investcapetown.com/apply-to-rent-sidewalks-at-a-reduced-rate/
  • The Business Support Programme, run through the Business Hub within the City’s Enterprise and Investment Department and in partnership with Productivity SA, provides assistance to small businesses (15 to 50 employees) in distress by proactively addressing the challenges businesses are facing and to prevent possible liquidation, closure or job losses.

By continuing to appeal to national government to change the curfew, together with wonderful initiatives like the Restaurant Rescue Project and the plans the City has in place to assist businesses, we can save jobs and the sectors hit hardest by the lockdown measures.

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