In an initiative designed to assist South Africans to source locally made fabric face masks and to enable the country’s clothing and textile sector to retain jobs, a dedicated marketplace portal goes live today on the Proudly South African website.
Proudly SA has been working on the site over the past week. Following the President’s announcement last night, 23 April, that all passengers travelling on public transport will be required to wear a mask and that it is recommended that everyone else wear a non-medical mask outside their homes, it is imperative that reliable sources of locally made masks are made easily available.
The concept of the portal arose from discussions with the SA Clothing and Textile Workers’ Union (SACTWU), the Department of Trade, Industry and Competition (the dtic) and The Manufacturing Circle around steps that could be taken to align initiatives underway in the clothing and textile manufacturing industry with the needs of the public and businesses. These include the ground-breaking collective agreement at the clothing bargaining council to galvanize the industry to produce more PPE items.
All companies listed on the site have confirmed with the clothing bargaining council that they are genuine manufacturers producing locally made fabric masks, supporting local jobs and operating under conditions that promote the health and safety of workers, amongst other things.
In order to help consumers select masks, the portal also provides a link to fabric mask guidelines published by the dtic.
The site links corporate buyers with producers of masks. It is hoped that companies who are currently using or issuing medical grade masks to workers will consider making them available to services on the frontline fighting the COVID-19 pandemic and purchase these alternative, approved masks for their workers.
The site displays the details of the manufacturer, pictures of the masks, the company’s production capacity per week and unit costs. It advances local manufacturing and jobs over imports and provides for the consumer interest with price as well as product transparency. Any company not complying with these requirements and others will be removed from the site. All manufacturers are required to register before they appear on the site.
Said Proudly SA CEO, Eustace Mashimbye, ‘This initiative is an effort to support a sector of our economy that is able to meet the current pressing demand for face masks which we have been called on to wear in order to support the government’s efforts to combat the spread of COVID-19. It is imperative that we support our local businesses, who have the capacity to produce sufficient masks to meet the country’s needs. We call on all corporates and retailers to use the portal to source their masks and to liberate any medical grade stock back to essential services.’
Corporate buyers/consumers can visit
while manufacturers wishing to register on the portal can email their interest to
For more information on Proudly South African visit www.proudlysa.co.za
Visit Proudly South Africa’s dedicated online shopping platform on www.rsamade.co.za
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