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Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment Act, 2003 (South Africa)
|Binomial Name:||Government of the Republic of South Africa|
|Date:||7 January 2004|
|Location:||Republic of South Africa|
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|Subject Matter:||Economic Development|
|The Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment Act, 2003 ('the BEE Act'), is the main piece of legislation supporting the South African government's Black Economic Empowerment policy. According to its Preamble, it was enacted to:|
|Objectives of the Act|
As outlined in s 2, the objectives of the BEE Act are to facilitate broad-based black empowerment by:
• promoting economic transformation and investment programmes in order to enable the broad-based and meaningful participation of black people in the economy;
• achieving a substantial change in the racial composition of ownership and management structures, as well as skilled occupations;
• increasing the extent to which communities, collective enterprises and women own and manage new and existing enterprises, and enhancing their access to economic activities, infrastructure and skills training;
• empowering rural and local communities by improving access to economic activities, land, infrastructure, ownership and skills; and
• promoting access to finance for black economic empowerment.
In s 1, the BEE Act defines 'black people' as a 'generic term which means Africans, Coloureds and Indians'.
The Black Economic Empowerment Council
In s 4, the Act also establishes the Black Economic Empowerment Advisory Council, whose functions include advising the government on the policy and progress of black economic empowerment and facilitating partnerships between the state and the private sector (s 5). The composition of the Council and the appointment of its members, as well as its Constitution and rules, are provided for in ss 6 and 7.
Codes of good practice
The Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment policy is overseen by the Department of Trade and Industry. As per s 9 of the BEE Act, the Minister of this Department may issue codes of good practice that prescribe legally enforceable targets consistent with the Act, as well as time periods in which these targets should be met.
The Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment Codes of Good Practice are now in effect, after being issued on 9 February 2007 under the BEE Act. For more information on the Codes of Good Practice, please refer to the links provided below.
Industry transformation charters
In the lead-up to the passing of the BEE Act in 2004, a number of industries prepared charters on BEE and transformation. Some of these charters contained scorecards that were loosely based on the Minister's Strategy for Broad-Based Economic Empowerment (2003), while others were merely undertakings of commitment to change (Department of Trade and Industry, Background to, Intention and Application of the Codes of Good Practice, 1).
In s 12 of the BEE Act, it is stipulated that the Minister must publish and promote an industry transformation charter if he or she is satisfied that it has been developed by the major stakeholders in the sector, and that it advances the objectives of the Act.
For some examples of industry transformation charters, please refer to the links below.
|The policy of broad-based black economic empowerment behind the BEE Act has received a mixed response, especially after the issuing of the Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment Codes of Good Practice. For an overview of the outcomes and verdicts of this policy, please refer to the ATNS Database entry for the Codes of Good Practice, for which a link has been provided below.|
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