New Page 2
New Page 2

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.

Photos are © the dti Photo Library, Media Club South Africa (, SA Tourism ( and the Department of International Relations and Co-operation (


the dti Service Delivery Charter



Home>> the dti>> Leadership


Minister Rob Davies, Dr | Deputy Minister Thandi Tobias − Pokolo | Deputy Minister Elizabeth Thabethe | Director−General Lionel October

Minister Rob Davies, Dr

   • Date of Birth: 12 May 1948
Current Position
   • Minister of Trade and Industry of the Republic of South Africa since 11 May 2009.
Academic Qualifications
   • Honours degree in Economics
   • Masters degree in International Relations from the University of South Hampton, UK.
   • Doctorate degree from the University of Sussex in Political Studies.
Career/Memberships/Positions/Other Activities
   • Member of Parliament since 1994.
   • Member of both the African National Congress (ANC) and South African Communist Party (SACP) in Mozambique.
   • Returned to South Africa in August 1990 and worked in the Department of Economic Policy at ANC Head Office in Johannesburg.
   • Professor and Co-Director of Centre for Southern African Studies at University of the Western Cape 1990-1994.
   • Undertook policy research for ANC and Southern African Development Community (SADC) 1990-1994.
   • Member of the South African Ministerial delegation to World Trade Organization (WTO) in Seattle (1999), Doha (2001), Cancun (2003) and Hong Kong (2005).
   • Led South African Delegation to the African, Caribbean, and Pacific (ACP)-European Union.
   • Joint Parliamentary Assembly (JPA) since 1995-2005.
   • Member of the Joint Parliamentary Assembly Bureau and ACP Co-Vice President of Human Rights 2003-2005.
   • Member of Eminent Persons Group put in place by the Global Coalition for Africa (2003).
   • Member of both Central Committee and Political Bureau of the SACP.
Contact Details
    Postal Address
Private Bag X 274
Pretoria, 0001
+27 (12) 394-1568
+27 (12) 394-0337

Deputy Minister Thandi Tobias - Pokolo

Current Position
   • Deputy Minister of Trade and Industry of the Republic of South Africa since 11 May 2009.
Contact Details
    Vanessa January
Private Bag X 274
Pretoria, 0001
+27 (0)82 775 9623
+27 (12) 394-0373
+27 (12) 394-1588


Deputy Minister Elizabeth Thabethe

Current Position
   • Deputy Minister of Trade and Industry of the Republic of South Africa since 1 November 2010.
Academic Qualifications
   • Course 1: Public Economics – Implementing Sustainable Strategies in a Globalising World (UWC, William College Center for Development Economics, FADTRU)
   • EPRI Economic Policy Course: Achieving Globalisation Potential: Economic Strategies for Job Creation and Poverty Reduction (UWC, William College Center for Development Economics, FADTRU)
   • Certificate in Economics, from the University of South Africa (Unisa); and
   • Advanced Diploma in Economics (UWC)
Career/Memberships/Positions/Other Activities
   • Former Trade Unionist.
   • Member of Parliament since 1994;
   • Convener of the ETC
   • Former Deputy Chairperson of the African National Congress (ANC) Women's League, in the Gauteng province;
   • Member of the ANC Provincial Executive Committee of the Gauteng province's Women's League;
   • Member of the Ekhuruleni Region of the ANC Regional Executive Committee;
   • Co-ordinator of the East Rand Women's League RTT structure;
   • Deputy Minister of Trade and Industry, from 22 June 2005 - 10 May 2009;
   • Provincial Whip and House Whip, from 1996 - 2004;
   • Member of ANC National Parliamentary Caucus;
   • Chairperson of Portfolio Committee on Environmental Affairs and Tourism, from 2004 - June 2005; and
   • Participation in the following Committees of National Assembly:
   • Member of the Labour Portfolio Committee,
   • Member of the Trade and Industry Committee,
   • Member of the Rules Committee,
   • Member of the Joint Rules Committee,
   • Member of the National Council of Provinces (NCOP) and National Assembly Programme Committee,
   • Member of the Chief Whips Forum,
   • Convener of Human Resources Cluster, Strategy Meeting, Whips Forum, ANC Women's Parliamentary Caucus, Multi-Party Women's Caucus, and
   • Parliamentary SADC Representative.

Contact Person:

Zanele Bambo
+27 (12) 394 1492 
+27 (21) 461 7191 
+27 (0)71 361 0129


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 Person:

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 Deputy Minister Ms Thandi Tobias-Pokolo Deputy Minister Ms Elizabeth Thabethe Director-General Mr Lionel October Group Chief Financial Officer - Mr Kumaran Naidoo Group Chief Operating Officer - Ms Jodi Scholtz International Trade and Economic Development Division (ITED) - Mr Xavier Carim Consumer and Corporate Regulation Division (CCRD) - Ms Zodwa Ntuli Industrial Development Incentive Administration Division (IDIAD) - Acting DDG - Dr Noncheba Mashalaba Group Systems and Support Services Division - Ms Sarah Choane Council of Trade and Industry Institutions (COTII) Industrial Development: Policy Development Division (IDPDD) - Acting DDG Mr Garth Strachan Broadening Participation Division (BPD) - Mr Sipho Zikode Trade and Investment South Africa (TISA) - Ms Pumla Ncapayi Chief Economist - Mr Stephen Hanival Chief Financial Officer - Mr Shabeer Khan