TFSA works with producers in Lesotho to improve compliance and linkage to new markets

Lesotho economic profile

Lesotho is a small, mountainous and landlocked country, and is an enclave of South Africa. Lesotho has close economic linkages to South Africa and is a member of the Common Monetary Area (CMA) with Eswatini, Namibia and South Africa.

Lesotho’s economic performance has been negatively affected by slow economic growth in the South African economy and sluggish global economic growth amid a major downturn in both emerging markets and advanced economies. However, the government of Lesotho has identified manufacturing, tourism, agriculture, technology and creative arts as the key economic drivers.

The private sector currently contributes less than 40% to the gross national investment, with the government dominating most economic activities in the country. To promote private sector participation for employment creation and economic growth, development of small, medium and micro entrepreneurs is imperative to change the landscape and trajectory of the country. (Source: The World Bank)

TFSA sector work in Lesotho

TFSA sector work in Lesotho The TFSA priority sectors in Lesotho are cosmetics and natural ingredients, and fruits, nuts and vegetables. Both were selected due to their recent growth development, the global interest in these products and the excellent regional supply potential. However, producers face a number of constraints to further sustainable development, including poor physical market access - domestically and regionally - and non-tariff barriers and regulatory processes that add cost and time to products and limit the ability of farmers to compete in regional markets. In addition to these TFSA priority sectors, the wool and mohair sector has been added in Lesotho due to its vital importance to the country and because of the interests expressed by local stakeholders. The wool and mohair industry is dominated by rural small-scale producers and is a major export sector with significant potential for growth through support to producers to comply with international certifications and regulations.

TFSA is currently in discussions with business support organisations, the Lesotho Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Lesotho National Development Corporation, and Lesotho National Wool and Mohair Associations, to finalise the design of TFSA support and services in the three sectors.

Country representative

Mpho Palime

Mpho Palime is an Independent Consultant with more than twenty years’ experience in International Trade Law and Trade Policy Formulation. Having experience in trade negotiations, she was involved in the negotiations of the Southern African Customs Union Agreement and the Southern African Development Community Protocol on Trade and the Protocol on Trade in Services. Having been part of Government delegations and part of the facilitators as a staff member of a Regional Organisation. She has worked for both Government and International Organisations in the capacity of Legal Advisor on International Trade Issues and has extensive knowledge and experience in drafting legal documents.

Success Stories

“We need to gain a better understanding on the regulatory side in the green technology and renewables sector. It is critically important that we clarify the local regulatory framework and give investors the confidence and incentive to enter the South African market. The impact of us understanding that marketplace and the competencies of South African businesses means that we can increase our exports significantly.”
Chiboni Evans, CEO South African Electronical Export Council (SAEEC)
“The fact that TFSA is very cognisant of gender is really a hugely exciting part of the programme. There is the prospect of real benefits to women in trade, including rural women. If this programme has an impact on alleviating poverty by bringing more women into the value chains, offering them a better lifestyle, then that is a massive positive effect.”
Duncan Bonnet, Director Market Access and Research, Africa House
This process we undertook with TFSA of looking at what is needed to enter the European market has been a real eye opener for us, it really helped us highlight where our gaps are in terms of compliance with regulations and standards. Now we have something constructive to work towards.” Sally Paulet, Production Manager, HIK Abalone Farm, South Africa
Sally Paulet, Production Manager, HIK Abalone Farm, South Africa
“The aquaculture sector in Mozambique is very small and under-developed. TFSA is working with AMAQUA and other associations and organisations to put in some foundational blocks and build the value chain from there – none of this really exists, we pretty much have to build it all from scratch.”
Zerene Haddad, Social Impact Coordinator, Chicoa Fish Farm