n Journal of Public Administration - Paying lip service to local economic development (LED)? - a city of Tshwane metropolitan municipality case study

Volume 41, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 0036-0767



South Africa has been a democracy for ten years in 2004 and it has been eight years since government endorsed local economic development (LED) as part of its strategy to transform institutions and society. The blue print for LED is applicable on all spheres of government, from provincial governments right down to municipalities. It seems that uncertainty exists as to what LED is all about. To add to the lack of clarity, LED objectives duplicate national government objectives for the economy, which fall within the specific functional areas of national government departments. This article explores the progress made with LED, by the City of Tshwane Metropolitan Municipality (CTMM). Assuming that it may serve as a proxy for LED activities by other municipalities, the article offers a critique on the LED programme at CTMM, with important suggestions on how LED may be improved. The most important is that municipalities should make a conscious effort to engage communities in their LED programmes and follow at least an international model such as the one suggested by the World Bank. Municipalities should also attempt to utilise valuable resources effectively by not duplicating programmes in the functional areas of economic development by national departments.

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