Industry | Labour | Government - Developing the South African Furniture Industry for the benefit of all stakeholders.

Vision: A fast growing, profitable, inclusive, and sustainable South African Furniture Industry by 2030.

Strategic Objectives: Improve the comptetiveness of the industry and the retention of existing capacity in the immediate term; and the sustainable growth of the industry with increased local supply.



South African designed and manufactured furniture in every home, school and workplace in Africa and beyond.


To build a globally competitive and transformed furniture industry that shapes lives in every home, school and workplace in Africa and beyond.


To have revenue streams that will generate sufficient income and enable SAFI to operate as an independent and self-reliant association.



  • Ensuring that all Furniture Bargaining Councils remain sustainable and grow to fulfill their statutory mandates.
  • Become a vehicle through which employer associations and trade union parties increase their representativity in the sector.


  • Sustainable business growth, focused on creating increased investment and productivity.
  • Inspire innovation and competitiveness to increase employment, research and development and poverty reduction.


  • Creating employment opportunities and decent work for industry employees.
  • Providing opportunities for employees to grow through technical skills and development opportunities
  • Career advancement opportunities and job security in the furniture industry.
  • Uplift industry employees through ongoing training and development to create technical skills and highly trained artisans.


  • A truly collaborative partner, focused on creating lasting prosperity and collective benefit for our sector with government and other public institutions.
  • Be a partner of choice for furniture retailers, private procurers, like minded associations and NPOs focused on growing and developing the furniture industry.


Market Access

  • Support demand for locally manufactured furniture
  • State procurement of furniture (seating, office and school furniture and mattresses).
  • Export promotion through the ACFTA platform and other trade agreements beyond Africa.
  • Access to locally produced raw materials.

Trade Intervention & Remedies

  • Curb illegal imports of furniture products.
  • Identification of tariff lines for duty rebate applications.
  • Use trade remedies to prevent uncompetitive imports of furniture products.
  • Monitoring – Customs Training.
  • Setting standards.

Platform for Market Intelligence

  • Build industry data platform to provide market intelligence to ensure quality decisions made by the furniture value chain and for the furniture value chain.

Skills Development and Training

  • Improve the technical skills in the furniture industry.
  • Introduce new skills to drive growth, capacity and innovation in the furniture industry.
  • Establish a qualified skills pool and career paths for younger generation aligned to Industry’s’ practical requirements.


Market Development Opportunities

  • Support government’s import replacement strategy to create demand for locally produced furniture products.
  • Actively participate in the ACFTA implementation processes to identify export opportunities.
  • Drive government furniture designation and increase public procurement of school and office furniture.
  • Establish innovative partnerships between retailers, manufacturers and government to promote local procurement of lounge and case goods products.
  • Establish local manufacturing capacity through the SAFI Furniture online directory.
  • Promote and update on industry trends and progress through the Annual Furniture Sector Forum.
  • Furniture Exhibition

Sustainable Raw Material Supply

  • Define key raw materials by chamber.
  • Establish an online raw material supplier database.
  • Establish the local key raw material manufacturing capacities and future investments.
  • Develop a supply versus demand model for each of the key raw material.
  • Work with SARS to develop an enforcement mechanism to ensure finished goods been imported meet local raw material standards.
  • Work with raw material suppliers to ensure reliable and consistent supply of raw materials and balance future demand.

Trade Intervention Measures

  • Partnership between SAFI,SARS, SABS and industry to curb illegal imports.
  • Support a rebate on selected upholstery fabrics and other tariff lines.
  • Targeted trade remedies to deter dumping of furniture products.
  • Monitoring – customs training.
  • Implement a system to ensure imported finished furniture goods, meet local raw material standards. “Place the responsibility on the importer to ensure goods meet local standards, at point of export”

Creating a Data Platform

  • Establish a focused Data and Insights team within SAFI.
  • Establish a single data warehouse that will integrate industry data and insights.
  • Establish partnerships with key stakeholders (government – StatsSA and private Industry, Bargaining Councils, Associations, SARS etc.) to align industry data and insights.
  • Value chain analysis.
  • Transformation: Reporting on current Industry B-BBEE levels and negotiate with government on targeted B-BBEE level for industry using current generic codes as well as share information on incentives available for transformation.

Build Skills in the Furniture Industry

  • Finalise a skills strategy with commitments from private, government and Academia (DHET, SETA, TVET Colleges).
  • Finalise Upholstery Level 4 qualification development.
  • Finalise Furniture Maker Level 4 qualification development.
  • Finalise Furniture Designer level 7 qualification development.
  • Pilot a Light Manufacturing Support Programme.
  • Mentorship Programme for prospective Black entrepreneurs to facilitate and incentivise transformation.
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