Are the calls for BEE revision growing? – an alternative plan

To comment on the success of Black Empowerment policies is a bit like the game “Whack a mole”.  Although some people like Moeletsi Mbeki openly state it is a policy that deters investment in the country, most people prefer to say nothing or if they do comment they quickly retreat before they can be slapped down. The comments that you do hear, include the criticism that it benefits only a select few and that the trickle-down effect that it was supposed to help the poor, did not take place. Inequality in South Africa has grown to one of the highest in the world. It has also not lead to a development of skills on a broad basis as only a select few have been chosen and have benefitted greatly. In South Africa, it is not uncommon to hear of a young black businessmen who has 10 or more 26% stakes in companies and associated board positions. As a businessman recently said; this nurtures a portfolio approach that is not conducive to developing deep operational skills. BEE companies also appear to have a licence to charge more for their products and services which does not help the economy. There are cases where a company charges X for its products and services and by the time that BEE partners have been engaged; the final price could be 3X. Terence Corrigan from the Institute for Race Relations writes in the Daily Friend that it is time for BEE to go. – Linda van Tilburg

Time for BEE to go