GOVERNMENT OF THE KINGDOM OF ESWATINI

MINISTRY OF COMMERCE, INDUSTRY AND TRADE

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

GRADUAL RELAXATION OF BUSINESS OPERATIONS

Mbabane, Eswatini – Following the pronouncement of an extension of the partial lockdown, Government will be introducing gradual relaxation of business operations effective Thursday 16th April 2020.

This means over and above essential businesses, non-essential businesses that will operate are only those classified as low risk.

The following industries identified as essential will continue to operate:

  1. 1. Food and Agriculture; which includes:
  • Those involved in the food value chain
  1. 2. Retail and consumer goods suppliers, which include:
  • Consumer Goods suppliers
  • Food Retailers e.g. food outlets, raw material suppliers and farmers
  • Those involved in the transportation, logistics and packaging of consumer goods
  • Other Retail Goods that support the medical industry e.g. bedding, linen and emergency clothing for hospitals, health workers and those caring for the sick
  1. 3. Network Infrastructure; which include:
  • Water, waste water and sanitation
  • Electricity suppliers
  • Renewable Energy suppliers
  • Gas suppliers
  • Fuel suppliers
  • Law enforcement
  • Defence, Safety and Security
  • Waste disposal
  • Fire and Emergency services
  • Mining and power stations
  1. 4. Medical and Health; which include:
  • Hospitals
  • Devices and Equipment
  • Pharmaceuticals
  • Funders
  • Doctors, nurses, paramedics e.t.c.
  1. 5. Forestry and Sawmills
  • For the production of disposable, health and hygiene products including toilet paper as well as for packaging for food and the health supply chain.
  1. 6. IT Systems and Telecommunications
  2. 7. Finance and Insurance
  3. 8. Tourism and Hospitality
  4. 9. Communications e.g. Media
  5. 10. Hardware Shops
  6. 11. Public Transport and cross-border trade transport
  • These will operate under the guidelines that Government has issued.
  • For cross-border transport, this will be restricted to essential services as defined in Eswatini, South Africa and Mozambique
  1. 12. Funeral Parlours
  2. 13. Spares Shops
  3. 14. Retail outlets selling baby clothes and baby essentials – These shall open three times a week (on Monday, Wednesdays and Saturdays), between 10am and 3pm.

Meanwhile, the following non-essential industries are hereby classified as follows:

Low-Risk

  • Car Wash businesses
  • Construction
  • Craft Vendors
  • Food vendors
  • Stationery Shops
  • Car dealerships
  • Warehousing
  • Agents and consultants
  • Photographic studios
  • Workshops and repairs
  • Cleaning services
  • Dry Cleaners
  • Driving Schools
  • Breakdown Services
  • Hawkers
  • Furniture Shops
  • Manufacturers who will observe the WHO and Ministry of Health Guidelines
  • Clothing Shops – These shall operate under the same conditions as retail outlets selling baby clothes and accessories.

High Risk

  • Hair dressing salons and barber shops
  • Manufacturing, distribution and wholesaling of liquor
  • Beauty parlours and gymnasiums
  • Night clubs and entertainment venues
  • Cinemas and theatres
  • Travel agents
  • Auctioneers
  • Clothing Street Vendors (Bend & Pick)

Municipalities and law enforcement agents will continue to exercise controls where appropriate. Those that have not been included in the above list will have to apply for permits to operate; on conditions that will be prescribed by the Ministry. However, businesses dealing in cross-border trade will still be required to produce a permit at the border.

All businesses that will operate will have to adhere strictly to the World Health Organisation (WHO) and Ministry of Health Guidelines. These include social distancing as well as the sanitation of workplaces and clients. Wearing of masks is recommended to minimise the risk of transmission.

Thank you.

Released by:

Senator Manqoba B. Khumalo

Minister for Commerce, Industry and Trade

15th April 2020

GOVERNMENT OF THE KINGDOM OF ESWATINI

MINISTRY OF COMMERCE, INDUSTRY AND TRADE

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

PERMITS FOR ESWATINI ESSENTIAL INDUSTRIES

The Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Trade is issuing permits for essential industries during the ongoing partial lockdown as pronounced by His Excellency Ambrose Mandvulo Dlamini on the 24th March 2020.

The permits are being issued for industries servicing the domestic market as well as those doing cross border trade. They are aimed at assisting essential industries operate efficiently and may need to be produced when required by Government officials, including armed forces, as well as inspectors. For cross-border traders, the permits will help them have smooth passage into and out of our neighbouring countries. It is also essential for those doing cross border trade to further provide a copy of the permit to the transporter for ease of travel.

To apply for a permit, traders are expected to submit a request, in writing, with the following details:

  1. Name of Company
  2. Company ID for large enterprises and Grant Number for informal traders
  3. Contact Person’s Name and Surname
  4. Contact Person’s Cell Number
  5. Contact Person’s Email Address
  6. Company physical address

Requests should be made by email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or by Whatsapp to 7642 8827.

The Ministry shall be vetting information submitted and any false declaration by companies shall be punishable by law.

Revenue collection, funeral parlours

On another note, the Ministry wishes to add revenue collection and funeral parlours in the list of essential industries.

Released by:

Senator Manqoba B. Khumalo

Honourable Minister for Commerce, Industry and Trade

3rd April 2020

GOVERNMENT OF THE KINGDOM OF ESWATINI

MINISTRY OF COMMERCE, INDUSTRY AND TRADE

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

GENERAL GUIDELINES FOR ALL INDUSTRIES

Following the declaration of a partial lockdown in the wake of the outbreak of COVID-19 worldwide, the Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Trade, in consultation with the business community, has identified the following principles within which businesses shall operate.

First and foremost, as a Ministry, we recognise that no business is non-essential but for the purposes of COVID-19, the Ministry recommends that the following industries continue operating as normal under World Health Organization (WHO) and Ministry of Health guidelines.

Essential services

The sectors below have been for this purpose identified as critical industries:

  • Food retailers
  • Consumer Goods suppliers
  • Manufacturers and all businesses that are involved in the food and consumer goods supply chain.
  • Agriculture and Agro-processing
  • Public Transport and cross-border transport
  • Fuel stations
  • Financial services
  • Waste disposal services
  • Health workers and Emergency Response Workers
  • Fire and Emergency services
  • Security Services
  • Water and Sanitation Services
  • Pharmacies
  • Telecommunications
  • Hospitality industry
  • Energy sector
  • media

For those businesses that do not fall within the specified sectors above, except for bars which remain closed and bottle stores which shall operate within a stipulated time frame, we encourage them to scale down by minimising their working hours. Businesses that cannot comply to WHO and Ministry of Health guidelines are expected to shut down until the situation normalises.

We do understand that some businesses will be affected by external factors and we encourage those to engage their employees to come up with a workable plan on how to manage the situation.

Food retailers

These are outlets that provide food; including supermarkets, restaurants and deli shops. However, we urge these businesses to follow the guidelines; which I shall be announcing shortly. We also encourage these businesses to introduce innovative ways of delivering their food items such as online orders and deliveries as well as digital payments. We cannot over-emphasise the importance of cooking home-made meals to those who can in order to minimise movement during this period.

Consumer Goods suppliers

These include retail and manufacturing industries in the consumer goods sector such as suppliers of raw materials, hand sanitisers, facial masks, disinfectant wipes, surgical gloves, toilet paper, baby formula and others.

Cross-border trade

This will continue as normal. However, the Ministry of Home Affairs shall advise in the instance of individual informal cross border traders.

Informal sector

We are aware that the informal sector shall be hardest hit by these developments. We shall, therefore, be working with Municipalities to ensure that the situation is managed amicably. Those who want to work are advised to observe the safety precautions as stipulated.

Essential business services at the Ministry of Commerce

The Ministry wishes to assure the public that our essential services such as company registrations, liquor and trading licences and their renewals shall continue as normal. We do, however, encourage Emaswati to use our online registration and name reservation services on https://www.online.gov.sz in order to minimise long queues at the risk of exposure to COVID-19. In a few days, we shall be announcing an online mobile payment system to make transactions more convenient.

Business principles and guidelines

As a country, we are aware that people’s lives are at risk and it is, therefore, everyone’s duty to take urgent preventative measures to minimise human loss. The business community needs to be at the forefront of these measures and it is against this background that the following guidelines must be implemented to reduce the spread of the virus to protect employees and customers in all sectors.

Manufacturing and Processing:

  • Government encourages the introduction of more shifts to limit the number of employees in factory floors and restrict the number of employees in any defined working area.
  • Businesses need to ensuring compliance of the World Health Organization’s social distancing guidelines (1.5-meter distance between 2 individuals). This is not negotiable.
  • Businesses are compelled to place hand sanitiser dispensers at the entrance and throughout the premises and ensure that they are replenished and/or replaced at all times.
  • Businesses need to provide hygiene reminders on visible posters and digital platforms.
  • Sanitation stations should be placed at every corner with high human traffic.
  • All business should reinforce cleaning and sanitisation protocols.
  • Businesses should step up the frequencyof cleaning by making cleaning routines "even more rigorous."
  • Businesses should periodically wipe down checkout lanes and touchscreens. 
  • Businesses should sanitise counters, doors and areas subject to frequent contact by people.
  • Businesses need to establish emergency protocols in the event any employee exhibits symptoms consistent with COVID-19 and immediately ensure traceability of contacts with the said suspected employee. This is to ensure that should the employee eventually prove positive, all the people with whom said employee would have come into contact are traced and then tested.
  • As a general rule, employers are to ensure that public transport in which their employers are transported should be sanitized both at boarding and disembarking.

In addition to the above, establishments in the food retail sector shall ensure:

  1. That all shopping carts (trolleys) are sanitised thoroughly after each use by shopping patrons
  2. Once a trolley has been used by each patron, it shall be sanitised once again, ready to be used by the next patron.
  3. Unnecessary contact to food by patrons shall be restricted and kept at an absolute minimum.
  4. Each retail establishment shall be sanitised periodically as is necessary so as to rid the atmosphere of flying germs.
  5. At Point of Sale (POS), there shall be a dedicated resource whose sole job will be to enforce social distancing measures as patrons make payment for their shopping.
  6. It shall be the duty of Management to ensure that at no point in time does the number of people exceed 20 inside any establishment. For smaller retail shops, this figure shall even be lower. In any event, social distancing of 1.5 metres apart shall be observed without fail.
  7. The exchange of legal tender, i.e. notes and coins, should be kept at an absolute minimum in favor of digital payment platforms which we hereby encourage that they be fully functional at all times.
  8. Management agrees to enforcing these measures at all times and the Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Trade with the help of duly authorised agencies such as Business Eswatini and FESBC shall ensure compliance.
  9. Failure to comply with the aforementioned can and will result in the closure of that business in the interest of people’s health.

For further information on business interventions, please contact the MSME Director Mr Mluleki Dlamini on 2404 3201/2/3/4/5/6 or send him an email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. You can also call our toll-free line 800 1002 or the following business federations:

Business Eswatini                                                                  -        2404 0768

Federation of Eswatini Business Community (FESBC)   -        2505 9199

Released by

Senator Manqoba B. Khumalo

Honourable Minister for Commerce, Industry and Trade

25th March 2020

GOVERNMENT OF THE KINGDOM OF ESWATINI

MINISTRY OF COMMERCE, INDUSTRY AND TRADE

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

 

ESWATINI IMPLORES TAIWAN TRADE COUNCIL TO SET UP REGIONAL OFFICE IN THE KINGDOM

 

Mbabane, Eswatini – Government’s Economic Turnaround Strategy is already taking shape as the Kingdom has scaled its efforts to promote Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) through engaging international strategic partners.

Minister of Commerce, Industry and Trade Manqoba Khumalo is currently in the Republic of China, Taiwan, where he is having a series of meetings aimed at enhancing trade between the two countries. On Monday, the Minister met with officials from the Taiwan Economic Trade Development Council (TAITRA) as well as the Chairperson of the Taiwan Sugar Corporation, Charles Huang. He is also due to meet the Taiwan Africa Business Association.

Discussions with TAITRA were focused on the following key areas:

  1. Expanding trade across the two countries to optimise the Economic Cooperation Agreement (ECA) by looking for further opportunities and encouraging Foreign Direct Investment into Eswatini;
  2. Lobbying TAITRA to set up their SADC regional office in Eswatini. Eswatini is set to become the economic hub for Africa, which is earmarked to be among the fastest growing economies globally.
  3. Requesting technical assistance in designing Eswatini’s economy and infrastructure to effectively support an export-based economy, which is how Taiwan turned its own fortunes around.

“TAITRA is seriously considering setting up in Eswatini. They also agreed to expand the participation of Taiwanese companies during this year’s Eswatini International Trade Fair (EITF), which we launched only last week, by at least 30 percent,” the Honourable Minister said.

Reciprocally, Eswatini will also increase its participation in the Taipei Trade Fair to be held in June this year. The Kingdom intends to occupy a whole pavilion instead of a stand.

ESWATINI TO SIGN ECA RULES OF PROCEDURE WITH TAIWAN

On another note, the Kingdom of Eswatini will this week finalise the Rules of Procedure for the Economic Cooperation Agreement (ECA).

Apart from finalising the rules of procedures, Minister Manqoba Khumalo also aims to persuade a major Taiwanese company to set up shop in Eswatini.

“A lot of work has gone into persuading this company but they are yet to make a formal commitment. I will spend time at their premises and hopefully persuade them to commit formally,” the Minister said.

Meanwhile, the Minister had a fruitful meeting with the Taiwan Sugar Corporation Chairman, Charles Huang. During their deliberations, they discussed how Taiwan Sugar had diversified its operations and how Eswatini could learn from their example. They also explored the possibility of exporting sugar to Taiwan.

Lastly, they discussed pork production using the latest technology since Taiwan is a net importer of pork. Taiwan Sugar Corporation is the leading pork producer in Taiwan.

The Minister also hopes to discuss beef exports into Taiwan.

Released by: Thabile Mdluli – Communication Officer

21 May 2019

OffCanvas Menu