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Economic Empowerment
Small Medium Micro Enterprise Development
Industrial Development
Trade, Export and Investment
Financial Assistance
Legislation and Business Regulation

About the dti

Home>> the dti>> Overview of the dti

Overview of the Department of Trade and Industry (the dti)

Vision of the dti
"A dynamic industrial, globally competitive South African economy, characterised by inclusive growth and development, decent employment and equity, built on the full potential of all citizens".
Mission of the dti
the dti´s mission is to:
  Promote structural transformation, towards a dynamic industrial and globally competitive economy;
  Provide a predictable, competitive, equitable and socially responsible environment, conducive to investment, trade and enterprise development;
  Broaden participation in the economy to strengthen economic development; and
  Continually improve the skills and capabilities of the dti to effectively deliver on its mandate and respond to the needs of South Africa's economic citizens.
Strategic Objectives of the dti

the dti´s strategic objectives are to:

  1. Facilitate transformation of the economy to promote industrial development, investment, competitiveness and employment creation;
  2. Build mutually beneficial regional and global relations to advance South Africa´s trade, industrial policy and economic development objectives;
  3. Facilitate broad-based economic participation through targeted interventions to achieve more inclusive growth;
  4. Create a fair regulatory environment that enables investment, trade and enterprise development in an equitable and socially responsible manner; and
  5. Promote a professional, ethical, dynamic, competitive and customer-focused working environment that ensures effective and efficient service delivery.
These five strategic objectives will be achieved through the collective efforts of the dti´s internal divisions and its Council of Trade and Industry Institutions (COTII), which are linked through a value chain to generate public value for the country´s economic citizens and deliver high-quality products and services to the dti´s varied clients and stakeholders. These products and services include policies, legislation and regulations, financial support and investment incentives, information and advisory support, as well as value-added partnerships.

the dti also aims to achieve its objectives through the pursuit of a more targeted investment strategy; improved competitiveness of the economy; broadened economic participation of previously disadvantaged individuals (PDIs) into the mainstream economy; and policy coherence.

Core Themes of the dti

After careful examination of its institutional arrangements and capacity to fulfil its mandate, the dti has clustered its work on the basis of core themes, which collectively seek to promote a more effective and co-ordinated approach to implementation of the dti´s strategic objectives, for an enhanced and long-term impact on the South African economy and its citizenry.

These themes are:

Industrial Development

focuses on the development and implementation of the upscaled Industrial Policy Action Plan (IPAP 2), which seeks to promote long-term industrialisation and industrial diversification. It further aims to expand production in value-added sectors, places emphasis on more labour-absorbing production and services sectors and the increased participation of historically disadvantaged individuals in the economy, as well as interventions in three diversified clusters, namely:
  Cluster 1: Metals fabrication, capital and transport equipment, green and energy-saving industries, and agro-processing sectors;
  Cluster 2: Automotives and components, medium and heavy vehicles, plastics, pharmaceuticals and chemicals, clothing, textiles, footwear and leather, bio-fuels, forestry, paper, pulp and furniture, cultural industries and tourism, and Business Process Outsourcing and Offshoring (BPO&O) services; and
  Cluster 3: Nuclear, advanced materials and aerospace sectors, to enable the country´s long-term advanced capabilities.
Trade, Export and Investment

focuses on increasing levels of international trade, foreign direct investment and economic co-operation on regional, continental and international levels. This thematic area also aims to encourage global competitiveness of exports and beneficiation of products, expand market access and develop programmes to encourage trade and investment activities.

It further seeks to provide strategic direction in terms of South Africa´s trade position in multilateral fora, such as the Southern African Customs Union (SACU), Southern African Development Community (SADC) and World Trade Organisation (WTO).

Broadening Participation

focuses on developing interventions and strategies that broaden the participation of previously marginalised groups in the mainstream economy.

This thematic area also aims to align the Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment (B-BBEE) policy with the country´s industrial policy and legislative frameworks, upscale and accelerate delivery of programmes to bolster economic empowerment among previously disadvantaged individuals, the women and the youth.

It further seeks to transform the largely informal economy via Small, Medium and Micro−sized Enterprise (SMME) development and the channelling of support measures to the Co-operatives sector.


focuses on the development and implementation of a coherent, predictable and transparent legislative and regulatory framework, which facilitates easy access to redress and creates a fair and competitive business environment in South Africa.
Administration and Co−ordination

focuses on the effective co-ordination and implementation of the Department and its group of specialised agencies´ programmes, as well as integration of the dti´s work into government´s broader Plan of Action, through the cluster system.

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the dti Service Delivery Charter

the dti Promotion of Access to Information Act

the dti Employer Value Proposition

the dti Corporate Video



Home>> the dti>> Leadership


Minister Rob Davies, Dr | Director−General Lionel October

Minister Rob Davies (MP)

  Minister Rob Davies
     Dr Rob Davies is serving his second term as Minister of Trade and Industry, having been appointed to this portfolio in May 2014.

During his first term from 2009-2014, he oversaw the development and implementation of annual three year rolling Industrial Policy Action Plans as well as steering South Africa's participation in important trade relations, including the Tripartite SADC-COMESA-EAC Free Trade Area, BRICS, Economic Partnership Agreement with EU, the US Africa Growth and Opportunity Act, and World trade Organisation Bali package. Between 2005 and 2008 he was Deputy Minister in the same Department. An ANC MP since 1994, Rob Davies served as Chairperson of the Portfolio Committees of Finance and Trade and Industry as well as the Constitutional Assembly Sub-Committee responsible for drafting Charter 13 (Finance).

Before entering Parliament, Rob Davies was Professor and co-Director of the Centre of Southern African Studies at the University of the Western Cape and before that Professor Auxiliar at the Centro de Estudos Africanos at Eduardo Mondlane University in Maputo, Mozambique. An anti-apartheid activist for many years, Rob Davies joined both the ANC and the SACP while in exile in Mozambique. He is currently a member of the Central Committee of the SACP and of the National Executive Committee of the ANC. Academically he holds an Honours degree in Economics from Rhodes University, a Masters in International Relations from the University of Southampton in the UK and a Doctorate in Political Studies from the University of Sussex.

Contact Details
    Postal Address
Private Bag X 274
Pretoria, 0001
+27 (12) 394-1568
+27 (12) 394-0337

Director-General Lionel October

    Mr Lionel October was appointed Director-General of the Department of Trade and Industry from 21 April 2011.

Lionel October was appointed the Acting Director-General (DG) of the Department of Trade and Industry (the dti) in South Africa on 01 January 2011. Prior to his appointment as Acting DG, he served as the Deputy Director-General (DDG) responsible for the enterprise and economic development portfolio, and served as an Economic and Trade diplomat at the South African Embassy in Brussels from 2007 to 2011. He was instrumental in key trade negotiations with the European Union.

Under his leadership as the DDG, the dti has spearheaded key industrial and enterprise development policies such as the National Industrial Policy Framework and Action Plan, and the development and implementation of Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment legislation, to name a few.

Current Position
    Director-General of the Department of Trade and Industry of the Republic of South Africa.

Academic Qualifications
   • University of London, Masters degree in Economics
   • University of the Western Cape, Legal Degree

Career/Memberships/Positions/Other Activities

As an experienced Economist, he held various senior positions related to trade unions, including being appointed as the General Secretary of the South African Clothing and Textile Union.

   • He previously served on boards of a number of public policy bodies and government agencies, such as the IDC and the COEGA Development Corporation.
Contact Details
    Ellen Msiza
+27 (12) 394-3075



Home>> the dti>> Organogram


Organisational structure of the dti

* click on the divisions name for more information.

Organogram in PDF

Minister of Trade and Industry, Dr Rob Davies Director-General Mr Lionel October Group Chief Operating Officer - Ms Jodi Scholtz International Trade and Economic Development Division (ITED) - DDG - Ms Xolelwa Mlumbi-Peter  Consumer and Corporate Regulation Division (CCRD)- Acting DDG - Mr McDonald Netshitenzhe Group Systems and Support Services Division - DDG - Ms Sarah Choane Chief Economist - Mr Stephen Hanival Incentive Development and Administration Division  - DDG - Ms Malebo Mabitje-Thompson Industrial Development: Policy Development Division (IDPDD) - DDG - Mr Garth Strachan SEZ and Economic Transformation Division -  DDG - Mr Sipho Zikode Trade and Investment South Africa (TISA) - DDG - Ms Pumla Ncapayi Investment South Africa (ISA) - Acting Head - Mr Yunus Hoosen Chief Financial Officer - Mr Shabeer Khan Council of Trade and Industry Institutions (COTII)