Red Tape Reduction Explained | Western Cape Government

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Red Tape Reduction Explained

Red Tape Reduction

Red tape makes it difficult for businesses to succeed, grow, create jobs and invest in infrastructure and development. It is often caused by a range of factors, which include people’s values, outdated or inappropriate policies, rules and regulations, inefficient processes and systems, poor management and staff skills shortages.

At the Western Cape Government we understand that entrepreneurship and small business start-ups are vital to the growth of the province and the South African economy. However, we recognise that even though many career opportunities exist for those who want to start their own small businesses, many of these business dreams are put on hold or completely halted.

For this reason the Red Tape Reduction Unit was established in 2011 to help businesses cut through or get around red tape. Since its inception, our Red Tape Reduction Unit has identified several issues raised by businesses, including: 

  • Cutting Red Tape in 2015Bureaucratic officials
  • A lack of co-ordination between agencies and departments 
  • A lack of clarity about government's objectives, processes and timeframes
  • Not enough transparent decision-making
  • The inconsistent interpretation of rules 
  • No connection between the regulator and business
  • A lack of accountability regarding decision-making. 

One of the most common queries the Red Tape call centre receives is from people wanting to know how they can start their own business.

“Small businesses are key to our economy in that they provide jobs to residents and increased revenue for the province. That is why we are doing everything in our power to assist them. We want people to experience the Western Cape as an easy, efficient place in which to invest and do business. Through their good work, the Red Tape Reduction Unit is changing the brand of our region,” Minister of Economic Opportunities Alan Winde said.

If you have encountered red tape issues, we urge you to share your experiences with the unit, because this is the only way we can offer support and assistance.

“In this way, we can also understand what the underlying problems are in the business or government environment and start to influence system changes,” Minister Winde added.


For any red tape related queries, please contact:

Western Cape Government Red Tape Call Centre:

Western Cape Government Contact Centre:

  • Call: 0860 142 142 
    • Monday to Sunday 07:00 - 19:00 
    • Cost of a local telephone call from anywhere in South Africa
  • Fax: 021 483 7216
  • SMS: Help to 31022  
  • Please Call Me: 079 769 1207
  • Emailservice@westerncape.gov.za
  • Visit the Contact Centre: 9 Wale Street, Cape Town
    • Weekdays 08:00 - 16:00
    • Saturdays 08:00 - 12:00

Video: Cutting Red Tape Starts With You


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The content on this page was last updated on 31 January 2019