Trade and Industry Portfolio Committee: Committee's Budget & Outstanding Minutes

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Trade and Industry

25 May 2010
Chairperson: Mr B Radebe (ANC)
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Meeting Summary

The Committee met to adopt several outstanding minutes as well as its budget for the financial year. The budget was adopted with no significant amendments. Members did, however, question certain line items and asked about the state of the budget once it had been submitted. The minutes dated 6 April, 7 April and 5 May were all approved without any amendments. The remaining minutes were all adopted with amendments.

Meeting report

Committee Minutes dated 6 April, 7 April and 5 May 2010
The Chairperson tabled three outstanding minutes for consideration. These minutes were dated 6 April, 7 April and 5 May 2010.

Members approved all three minutes without any amendments.

Committee Minutes dated 16, 21 April 2010
The Chairperson requested Members to consider the two outstanding minutes and raise any objections they had.

Ms F Hajaig (ANC) pointed out that both minutes did not reflect that she had sent apologies for being absent and asked that this be corrected.

These amendments were accepted and both minutes were adopted.

Committee Minutes dated 23 April 2010
Mr S Marais (DA) pointed out that the minutes ought to have reflected that a specific contract that had been discussed in the meeting had not been finished punctually. This was of specific relevance as the Committee was concerned about the timeframes and constraints with which the contractors were faced.

Members agreed with the change and adopted the minutes.

Committee Minutes dated 12 May 2010
The Chairperson noted that the minutes did not clearly capture the Industrial Development Corporation’s (IDCs) statement that it had available funding totalling R100 billion over five years. In addition, it did not reflect the IDCs decision not to use maize as biofuel, as a result of food safety concerns.

Members concurred with this amendment.

Also, Members corrected minor errors and adopted the minutes.

Committee Minutes dated18 May
The Chairperson stated that the minutes ought to have included, as an annexure, the Minister of Trade and Industry’s written response to the submissions regarding the Industrial Policy Action Plan.

Members agreed with this observation and adopted the minutes.

Adoption of Committee’s Budget
The Chairperson said that the total budget stood at R5.4 million over the current financial year.

Mr Marais asked what the line item labelled “Workshops and Conferences” entailed.

The Committee Secretary responded that this item in the budget allowed for members to attend workshops and conferences to which the Committee was invited.

Ms Hajaig asked what the rationale was for the allowance of a line item for Senior Council when Parliament already had legal advisors.

The Committee Secretary replied that Parliament often did not have the capacity to assist the Committee with Legal Council and as such, a provision had been made for legal advisors to give their opinions to the Committee regarding certain issues. This provision could potentially not have been applied, but there existed a provision nonetheless.

Ms Hajaig said that the capacity of Parliament needed to be beefed up in order for the Parliamentary legal advisors to be able to operate without constraints.

The Chairperson responded that the line item in the budget would still stand and no amendment would be made but the comments made by Ms Hajaig would be considered as the Committee moved forward.

Mr X Mabaso (ANC) asked whether there was a provision in the budget for community members and experts on a particular subject to be invited by the Committee to attend Committee meetings.

The Chairperson responded the line item labelled “Witness Expenses” made provision for cost of hosting these invited guests.

Mr Njikelana addressed two issues. Firstly, he commented that the notes should have accompanied the budget in order to clarify figures and to reduce the amount of possible queries. This amendment was noted and was considered for adoption. Secondly, he asked about the deadline for budget submission.

The Chairperson replied that the budget submission was already overdue.

Mr Marais asked if the budget would still be under consideration after it was submitted.

The Chairperson responded that the budget would indeed be under consideration and that there was a possibility that the Committee would need to consider cutting certain expected expenditures.

Members adopted the budget.

The Chairperson concluded thanked the Committee for their input.

The meeting was adjourned.


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