Revised B-BBEE codes open for public comment

The revised broad-based black economic-empowerment (B-BBEE) codes of good practice have been opened for comment for a 60-day period, the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) said yesterday.

BEE remained an imperative in South Africa, said Minister Rob Davies speaking at the launch of the revised B-BBEE codes.

“It is not just a social or political imperative… but an economic imperative as well. Control of companies in the country should be reflective of the demographic and we cannot expect to grow as an economy if business leadership is in the hands of the small minority.”

The current generic scorecard contains seven elements and these have been reduced to five, with a total of 105 points assigned to the five elements. All companies, except the exempted micro enterprises (EMSs) should comply with all the elements of the scorecard.

“There is also some adjustment to the points allocated and the qualification criteria. There is also an enhanced recognition of the status of black-owned micro enterprises,” said Davies.

He said one of the new things being proposed in the revised codes was the introduction of minimum requirements for priority elements. These are ownership, skills development and enterprise and supplier development. Qualifying small enterprises are required to comply with two of the elements, although ownership is compulsory, while large entities will have to comply with all of the requirements.

The thresholds for EMEs and QSEs have also been adjusted, with EMEs increasing from R5-million to R10-million and QSEs increasing from between R5-million and R35-million to R10-milion and R50-million. The Minister explained that inflation was the rationale behind the increases.

All entities would be forced to comply with priority elements under the following conditions: QSEs would need to comply with at least two of the priority elements, which include compulsory black ownership and education for sustainable development or skills development; while large entities would need to comply with all priority elements.

Entities that did not meet the thresholds in these elements would be discounted in B-BBEE levels.

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