AS an export-led economy, Lesotho's economic health depends on strong export performance and private sector-led industrial growth, the Acting Chief Executive Officer of the Lesotho National Development Corporation (LNDC), Advocate Molise Ramaili said.
Aug. 10, 2023
3 min read
Small businesses applauded for remarkable work
Acting LNDC boss, Adv Molise Ramaili
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He was speaking at the 2023 Lesotho Annual Exporter Awards presentation ceremony which was held on Tuesday this week in Maseru where outstanding businesses that have distinguished themselves in exploiting global markets were recognised.
The event was hosted by the LNDC in collaboration with the Lesotho Post Bank.
The awards, which are supported by USAID Africa Trade and Investment (ATI), are the result of a partnership between the LNDC and the USAID Trade and Investment Hub (Trade Hub).
The Trade Hub is a US-government-funded project that aims to increase and improve the participation of Africa Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) beneficiary countries that trade with the United States (US) and South Africa.
The awards ceremony featured several categories, including best emerging brand, best market-sustaining exporter, best innovative and versatile exporter, best diversifying market and product exporter, and overall exporter of the year. Each category had a winner and a runner-up.
Ramaili said the awards recognise outstanding performances and businesses that have distinguished themselves in exploiting global markets.
“As an export-led economy, Lesotho's economic health depends on strong export performance and private sector-led industrial growth,” he said.
The annual exporters awards are therefore one of the most important events in the annual calendar for the LNDC and other national stakeholders in export promotion.
The awards ceremony provides an opportunity for the LNDC to interact face-to-face with private sector companies that are the backbone of Lesotho's economy.
The Deputy Principal Secretary (DPS) of the Ministry of Trade, Industry, Business Development, and Tourism, ’Mamahabe Mojela, applauded the businesses for not only contributing to economic growth but also representing the country's development aspirations, culture, and values.
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She urged the exporters to seize the opportunity to lead by example and contribute to the global movement towards a more sustainable and responsible trade ecosystem.
SANLEI Premium Trout, a company that produces and exports high-grade trout, won three awards in different categories, while Iconics, the producers of thermal heating clothes, won the overall exporter of the year award.
Pitso Ramosebetsi, co-founder of Iconics, expressed his surprise and excitement at winning the award and revealed that the company has set its sights on partnering with big retailers such as Woolworths.
Last year's overall winner, Zeri Leather, won the Regional Exporter of the Year Award and competed with winners from eight countries.
The founding partner of Zeri Leather, Lebeoane Matsimane, showed that the company had an opportunity to design bags for high-profile individuals, including King Letsie III, South Africa's President Cyril Ramaphosa, and US President Joe Biden.