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BEE and the Economy

We all have a lot to say about COVID 19 and the current state of “lockdown”.

Some of it is personal, some of it a conspiracy, portions opinions, lots of statistics and various different voices that have never before been heard. Social media is a spread of memes, jokes, heartache, news, and people publishing how the situation affects their current reality.

In a company that specializes in niche offerings of skills development, mostly in rural and township areas, operations as we knew it was suddenly grounded. Through innovative thinking and fast reaction, we were able to salvage portions of this, which places us in a good position going forward.

B-BBEE has, for years, been a thorn in many a South African’s sides. The intention of B-BBEE is sound, but the cumbersome regulations and application thereof negate most of the gains it is supposed to create.

The economic landscape will change considerably, we should adjust to it early.

Personally, I have a few thoughts regarding the current state of the economy and the application of B-BBEE to this:

1. Very few companies would still be able to afford the relative “luxury” of B-BBEE
2. Previously generic (large) entities would now be downgraded to QSE. Thus decreasing the number of compliance requirements
3. Youth Employment Service initiatives would take a backseat

4. Skills spend would be increasingly un-affordable

My 10 cents regarding possible solutions:

1. Force SETAs to urgently accredit or approve online learning
2. Allow all donations to the solidarity fund as either Enterprise Development or Socio-Economic Development spend

3. Simplify regulations, to ensure faster verification and thus improving the chances of the private sector getting back into the market.

Businesses can only play the cards it has been dealt with. Its time to adjust, lest we fold.

Written by Rudolf Rautenbach

2 thoughts on “BEE and the Economy”

  1. Thank you for the lovely and insightful reflection. A reflection that some of us fear to zoom into and accept that the Business landscape will have to adjust and with that adjustment comes the need to explore new ways of doing business. Im of the belief that in every disaster there is an opportunity, an opportunity to do away with inneficient systems or to improve how we do things. The suggestion you have made of SETAS approving online training very key. The current face of education and training as we know it is changing rapidly. The SETAS need to go with the times and align themselves with digital disruption as this will ensure efficiency, integration and a wider reach.

    As for the use of soliditary funds for SED and ED spend, that makes logical sense. If there is one thing we have learnt from this pandemic, its that small business needs help and community development is way behind thsn we initially thought. We need to re-look these issues ypu have raised and improve the manner in which we, as Business, as a Country and our Government approaches these important aspects of econonic development and grow forward.

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