One of the key success factors for the local SMME sector is the continued generation of new business ideas which are essential for the achieving the diversification of both the sector and the economy. The Local Enterprise Authority (LEA) has, at its disposal, several sources that provide opportunities for generation of new ideas. Among these are, the numerous trade agreements between Botswana and her trading partners such as the SADC Trade Protocol, World Trade Organisation (WTO), Cotonou Agreement, Southern African Customs Union Agreement (SACUA), and the Africa Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA).
These trade agreements provide preferential market access to members states. They also provide investment opportunities for the business communities in the members states. For instance, under AGOA, which seeks to improve trade and economic co-operation between the United States of America(USA) and Sub-Saharan Africa(SSA), there are 6500 products lines which can be exported to the American market duty free. Local SMMEs have the opportunity to start businesses in the production of these items with the assurance of the readily available market. Investing in these new product lines will relief those sectors that are already overtraded. The initiative will further add resonance to the quest for sectoral and economic diversification.
On the home front, LEA continues to work with different stakeholders to identify new business opportunities within its four main sectors. In tourism, LEA encourages SMME entrepreneurs to harness opportunities availed by the local eco-tourism sub-sector. There is great potential for the development of new businesses and products in this sub-sector through the harnessing of the culture heritage, historical sites, folklore products, arts and crafts, to name but just a few. As a popular destination and transit point for international tourists, Botswana's SMMEs will reap significant benefits from investing in these products. They will also make a measurable and noteworthy contribution to a sector that has been foreign dominated in a long time.The manufacturing sector also provides major potentials and opportunities when one looks at Botswana's import bill. The country consumes more than 80 % of finished products which are imported from neighbouring countries. This situation presents great manufacturing opportunities with noticeable market potentials both locally and regionally. LEA has already taken some initiatives intended to assist SMMEs harness these opportunities. One such an initiative is the Business Linkages Programme which has component targeting the utilisation of waste and by-products from local copper mines, the beneficiation of copper, and the supply of mining inputs.