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45% of businesses consider retrenchments; lockdown must be cancelled to prevent social disaster

45% of businesses consider retrenching their employees within the next three months as a consequence of the national lockdown. Moreover, 24% indicated that retrenchments have already occurred. These are some of the most notorious findings of a telephonic survey that the AfriForum Research Institute conducted in the last week of April and the first two weeks of May among businesses registered on AfriForum Network.

The findings of the survey confirm that the national lockdown is causing serious financial consequences for business owners. 92% of respondents indicated that they foresee financial losses, while 50% (of the 92%) indicated that they are the only breadwinner in their families. Promises of support from government do not realise. 28% of respondents indicated that they had registered on the government’s website for financial support but have yet to receive a reply. Only 3% of respondents have received official feedback.

AfriForum is currently hosting a petition to apply pressure on government for the pay-out of state help (for example from the UIF). The petition is available here.

Approximately 45% of respondents argued that they cannot conduct their primary business operations online, while only 9% indicated that they can conduct their complete business operations online. 22% of respondents indicated that they can only partially conduct their business operations online.

“The findings of the survey clearly show that the country-wide lockdown has detrimental consequences for businesses. The lockdown must be called off urgently to allow businesses to resume their operations and to prevent a social disaster,” says Barend Uys, Head of Research and Development at AfriForum.

“We want to encourage businesses to become part of AfriForum Network especially during these challenging times. AfriForum Network boasts 12 000 businesses and is still growing. We hope that the applicable information that we send out weekly per newsletter to our network businesses can help with the challenges that now face businesses,” says Sanderien van der Walt, Manager of AfriForum Network.

AfriForum Network is a country-wide network where consumers and entrepreneurs can find, encourage and support each other. Visit www.afriforumnetwerk.co.za for more information.

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