Public urged to comment on Draft AgriBEE Sector Code

Monday, March 26, 2012

Pretoria-The AgriBEE Charter Council which is overseeing the transformation agenda of the agricultural sector is urging interested stakeholders and individuals to comment on the Draft AgriBEE Sector Code.

This follows the gazetting of the Draft AgriBEE Sector Code by the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) on Monday.

The council is anticipating that after the submission of comments within 60 days, the final AgriBEE Transformation Framework will lead to increased participation by black people in ownership; management; control of agricultural enterprises; agricultural value chain and the enhancement of skills development of the workers in the sector.

The Charter Council, which is made of up of representatives from government, industry, as well as labour, was appointed by the Minister of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, Tina Joemat-Pettersson, for the purposes of developing and gazetting the AgriBEE Sector Code.

The Charter Council is the main driver of the development of the sector code and has been charged with ensuring broader public participation in this 60-day period.

Chairperson of the Charter Council and director-general of the department of Agriculture, Langa Zita said they will organise consultation platforms for ordinary South Africans across the country to voice their inputs on the draft sector code.

This according to Langa will start from the date of the publication of the gazette.

Langa said the gazette of the AgriBEE Sector Code was necessitated by the sector "specifics" that distinguished the agricultural sector from all the other sectors of the economy.

He said for this purpose, specific weightings and targets have been determined by the sector, aimed at enhancing the efforts by the stakeholders towards full transformation of the agricultural sector.

"The sector "specific" factors include, but not limited to, land ownership; high level of illiteracy; the agrarian nature of the agricultural sector and the role it can play in rural development programmes.

"The date of March 26 marked the moment for total transformation in the agricultural sector in South Africa.

"I am happy with the conclusion of this arduous process as it gives a clear path on how transformation should unfold in the agricultural sector", Zita said.