22 February 2021

From the Government Gazette and Media Statements (22 February 2021)


Temporary Employer-Employee Relief Scheme (TERS)

  • On 11 February, a Department of Employment and Labour media statement:
    • confirmed that the extension announced in President Cyril Ramaphosa’s State of the Nation Address (SONA) will target sectors of the economy that have not been ‘fully operational’ since the State of Disaster was declared in March 2020,
    • referred to the tourism and hospitality sectors, liquor industry and their respective value chains in that context, and
    • confirmed that the Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF) ‘will continue to process and pay valid and complete outstanding Covid-19 Ters benefit claims … already in the system’.
  • On 17 February, a media statement was issued announcing that:
    • the social partners in the National Economic Development and Labour Council (Nedlac) have ‘endorsed’ UIF proposals on:
      • ‘how the Covid-19 Ters will be extended to:
        • sectors still affected by lockdown regulations’ and
        • ‘employees with comorbidities and those over 60 who cannot be reasonably accommodated at work’, and
      • ‘two payment iterations in the new extension’ for the periods:
        • 16 October to 31 December 2020, and
        • 1 January to 15 March 2021.
    • The social partners in Nedlac have ‘welcomed’ UIF proposals on income replacement for self-isolating or quarantined employees.

Social relief of distress grant

  • Regarding the three-month extension announced in the SONA, a Department of Social Development media statement issued on 12 February confirmed that:
    • ‘persons who have already received this grant and are in the system need not re-apply’
    • their circumstances will be reassessed each month, as usual
    • unsuccessful applicants should not reapply but have the right to lodge an appeal, and that
    • those who have already done so need not repeat the process.



  • An integrated crime prevention strategy was gazetted on 20 February for public consultation (it is dated 5 February and formed part of the first National Government Gazette to be published since 29 January).


  • A proposed new list of critical skills released on 18 February for public comment:
    • will be used to regulate the admission of skilled foreign workers, but
    • should not be confused with a list on skills in high demand published in November 2020.




  • Draft regulations on emergency medical services were gazetted on 18 February for public comment.




  • Certain activities in government’s working for ecosystems, water and wetlands programmes may now be exempted from obtaining authorisations under the 1998 National Environmental Management Act, according to three notices gazetted on 20 February. (Dated 5 February, they formed part of the first National Government Gazette to be published since 29 January).


Broad-based black economic empowerment (B-BBEE)


  • A notice gazetted on 19 February has confirmed that:
    • the recently launched tourism equity fund is permitted to exceed ownership and management control elements in the relevant B-BBEE codes of good practice
    • the Department of Tourism has demonstrated how this ‘will promote the objectives of the … Act specifically and transformation in general’, and that
    • the authorisation will be effective for the fund’s duration or 10 years, ‘whichever is shorter’.




  • A Bill establishing a national water resources infrastructure agency ‘will be ready for tabling during the second half of this year’, according to Human Settlements, Water and Sanitation Minister Lindiwe Sisulu. Mentioned briefly in the 2021 SONA, the proposed new agency is expected to:
    • ‘sustain and improve the performance of all strategically important water supply systems in regions where water security is at increasing risk’, and
    • ensure that ‘ageing’ infrastructure is ‘properly maintained’.


Prepared by Pam Saxby

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