The Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM) for 2011 indicates that the percentage of South Africa’s population between 18 and 64 years, either in the process of starting a business or involved in an established business, has increased since 2006. The increase in the former has jumped from 5.3% in 2006 to 9.1% in 2011, whilst the latter (involved in an established business) increased from 1.7% to 2.3%. Despite the increase, South Africa has a concerning low rate of start-up and established businesses. These were some of the statistics shared today during a presentation by the Western Cape Department of Economic Development and Tourism, during a visit to the Small Enterprise Development Agency’s (SEDA) offices in Bellville today, 20 June 2012. Increasing opportunities for growth and jobs are one of the key Strategic Objectives of the Western Cape Government. As DA spokesperson on Economic Development and Tourism, I was impressed by the insightful feedback given by an entrepreneur, Palesa Moeketsi, on how entrepreneurs should function. She was the provincial winner and national finalist of the 2012 SEDA Stars Small Business Competition. Entrepreneurs remain an integral part in fighting unemployment and enabling skills development. According to the GEM report, South Africans’ entrepreneurial perceptions, intentions and societal attitudes have improved since 2006. However, I am concerned about the increase in entrepreneurs’ fear of failure. Education remains one of the most important aspects of creating and maintaining an entrepreneurial and innovative culture. The Western Cape Government’s website (www.westerncape.gov.za) has valuable information on assistance provided to entrepreneurs or Small, Micro and Medium Enterprises (SMME’s) as well as a dedicated page dealing with government tenders – tender opportunities in all spheres of government, tender process and requirements, as well as support provided to would-be tender holders. The online information is also available at access points throughout the province, such as the SEDA and The Business Place offices, addressing the various stages of business development. The importance of access to information should not subtract the valuable contribution which peer education from positive role-models and industry specific support by the private sector can have in developing our entrepreneurs. Entrepreneurial spirit should be cultivated through the opportunities available and even making mistakes form part of the learning process. I urge all role-players involved, as well as the communities surrounding our entrepreneurs, to support, encourage and develop our business leaders of tomorrow.