June 18, 2024

Wholesale and retail sector Skills Development Summit and Good Practice Awards

3 min read

To highlight and review the Wholesale and Retail sector’s successes, challenges and future opportunities, the Wholesale and Retail Sector Education and Training Authority (W&RSETA) will host a Skills Development Summit later this month.

“The Wholesale and Retail industry plays a pivotal role in the economy as the third biggest contributor, providing employment opportunities for millions of people across the country. Considering this, in 2020 we developed a five-year Strategic Plan to respond to the goals and objectives of the National Skills Development Plan (NSDP) 2030,” says W&RSETA CEO, Tom Mkhwanazi. 

The summit will take place on 25 October 2023 at Radisson Conference Centre OR Tambo. 

“This summit grants us space to frankly review our sectoral contributions to skills and our response to the evolving skills needs of the sector. Additionally, the summit will allow us to engage our stakeholders on the role and contribution our sector is making toward the goals and objectives of the NSDP. Importantly, the summit will chart the trajectory of the industry, focusing on job creation and other topical issues,” he adds.


Attendees will include senior officials from the Department of Higher Education & Training; the National Skills Authority;  Department of Small Business Development; Small Enterprise Development Agency; Department of Women, Youth and People with Disabilities; beneficiaries of skills development grants; wholesale and retail companies; organised business and labour organisations; National Youth Development Agency; institutions of learning such as colleges, universities and universities of technology; and the Namibia Training Authority.


The key highlights of the summit will include: 

• Industry Insights: Renowned experts and thought leaders such as global strategist Abdullah Verachia will provide insights into the current state of the Wholesale and Retail sector, emerging trends, and prospects.

• A stakeholder perspective on partnerships that are required to drive the W&RSETA’s strategic priorities by the directors-general of the Department of Small Business Development, and Department of Women, Youth and People with Disabilities.

• W&RSETA’s progress report on the implementation of the NSDP.

• Panel discussion on the current and future skills demands to provide an outlook of the sector.

Good Practice Awards

As an extension to the summit, W&RSETA will host the Good Practice Awards on 26 October 2023 to recognise and celebrate excellence by stakeholder companies, training providers, institutions of learning, women leaders, and W&RSETA beneficiaries in the implementation of skills development in the sector. 

Furthermore, the awards will recognise organisations and individuals that demonstrate exceptional commitment to skills development, particularly skills development planning and reporting and going beyond compliance with legislation. 

Award categories

The award categories to be recognised will include wholesalers and retailers, training providers, beneficiaries of W&RSETA programmes, Women in Leadership, Entrepreneurship, and Innovation. 

Mkhwanazi expresses his excitement about the awards, saying they underscore the W&RSETA’s commitment to promoting skills development within the sector. “The awards represent a significant milestone in our mission to promote excellence in skills development. We want to honour those who have gone above and beyond to ensure our sector remains competitive and offers high-quality career opportunities.”

The summit and awards are expected to appeal to diverse sector stakeholders such as employers, educators, policymakers and industry professionals. It promises to be an enriching experience for anyone interested in the Wholesale and Retail sector’s future.

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