Questions and Replies

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30 April 2024 - NW574

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Bergman, Mr D to ask the Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition

With regard to the National Gambling Board and since the appointment of the Chief Strategic Advisor (CSA) and Accounting Officer, Ms Caroline Kongwa, over a decade ago, what (a) are the reasons that (i) a new board has not been established and (ii) a new Chief Executive Officer not appointed and (b) is the total salary of the current CSA and Accounting Officer per annum?

Reply:

I am advised as follows:

The former members of the Board were suspended in August 2014 pending a forensic investigation following allegations of maladministration, wasteful expenditure and corrupt activities reported by the Auditor-General South Africa (AGSA) in the NGB’s 2013/14 annual report and financial performance.

The suspended Board members had reportedly contravened the Public Finance Management Act (PFMA) through failing to prevent irregular, fruitless and wasteful expenditure and making overdrafts on the entity’s bank account without the approval of the Minister of Finance. Furthermore, the Board’s accounting authority, acting either individually or jointly, had allegedly contravened the National Gambling Act by allowing members whose term of office had expired to continue participating in the Board’s activities and representing the NGB.

Two Administrators were appointed from September 2014 to continue with the work of the NGB. The current Chief Strategic Advisor (CSA) was appointed in April 2019 following her stint as former administrator to the NGB.

The National Gambling Amendment Bill was introduced to Parliament in August 2018 and passed by the National Assembly in December 2018. The Bill sought to remove the concept of a Board comprising various external members, and replacing this concept with governance led by a Chief Executive Officer, with the assistance of a Deputy CEO. The policy position taken by the Department at the time was that the National Gambling Regulator be established in line with other entities of the dtic after considering the dtic research on Agency Rationalization which found that maintaining the board system was costly and did not contribute towards internal efficiencies of the NGB. However, the Bill was not adopted by the National Council of Provinces (Council) in 2019 and lapsed to the current Parliament. The Bill was revived and was referred to Mediation in December 2021 after it was not t supported by several provinces. The Bill has been in Parliament to date pending the Mediation process.

The delay in the finalisation of the National Gambling Amendment Bill has contributed to the delay in the appointment of the CEO as the appointment needs to be aligned with the Amendment Act.

I am advised that the current total gross salary for the NGB CSA is R2 553 905. As indicated in replies to Questions Number 450, 575 and 745, remuneration matters are now the subject of an investigation commissioned by the Department.

-END-

30 April 2024 - NW573

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Bergman, Mr D to ask the Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition

Whether, he has found any investigation that is currently or was previously undertaken by the Office of the Public Protector to determine the legality of the decision to appoint a staff member of his department as an accounting officer to oversee administration at the National Gambling Board; if not, what is the position in this regard; if so, what are the relevant details of the investigation?

Reply:

The Department informs me that a notice was received from the Office of the Public Protector (“the PP”) in December 2020 and an extensive response relating to the notice was submitted. It advises further that no further substantive communications on this issue were received from the PP. It was assumed therefore that the PP concluded that no investigation or further investigation herein was merited.

-END-

30 April 2024 - NW842

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Bergman, Mr D to ask the Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition

What (a) total number of times has the SA Bureau of Standards appointed a service provider to appoint a Chief Executive Officer and (b) has been the total cost of the consulting fees to date?

Reply:

The South African Bureau of Standards has advised as follows:

A service provider was appointed in 2020, when the SABS was led by Administrators.

They conducted the search including advertising, the development of a longlist for the SABS to consider and shortlisting. Following the appointment of a new Board, the process was re-activated in 2023, and the same service provider was asked to conclude the work. The work completed covers the following: advertising, response handling, preparing and presenting a longlist, and headhunting. The Board concluded however that no appointment could be made based on the recommendation of the service provider. The consultancy fee was R209 999.

A new service provider was appointed in 2023 to continue with the process of searching for the suitable candidate in the position of the SABS CEO. The work included advertising, processing of responses, headhunting and candidate sourcing. The cost of consultancy fees to date is R429 333.

-END-

30 April 2024 - NW612

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Le Goff, Mr T to ask the Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition

With reference to his reply to question 97 on 24 February 2023, what are the details of the (a) make, (b) model, (c) year of manufacture, (d) date of purchase and (e) purchase price of all the official vehicles purchased for (i) him and (ii) each Deputy Minister since 8 May 2019?

Reply:

(a), (b), (c), (d), (e)

  1. No vehicle has been purchased for use by the Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition, since 8 May 2019. He uses Toyota Fortuner vehicles purchased in 2010 (14 years old) and 2016 (8 years old), as official vehicles. They are made in South Africa and have proven to be reliable and resilient.
  2. Details of vehicles purchased for the use of the Deputy Ministers since 8 May 2019 has not changed since the previous reply of 24 February 2023.

-END-

29 April 2024 - NW785

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Bergman, Mr D to ask the Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition

What (a) number of overseas trips did the Accounting Officer of the National Gambling Board (NGB) undertake that the NGB paid for, (b) what was the destination of each trip and (c) was the total cost to the NGB for each trip?

Reply:

The Department has commenced an investigation into matters relating to the National Gambling Board, initially focused on the procurement of the building. A forensic investigating company has been appointed in this regard.

A further briefing by the Department relating to remuneration and authorization for overseas travel has raised governance questions relating to these matters. This will now be included in the forensic investigation.

The Department is also considering what appropriate immediate steps should be taken in addition to the above.

Once the investigation is complete, the necessary actions will be taken where warranted, and a report will be submitted to Parliament.

-END-

29 April 2024 - NW722

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Le Goff, Mr T to ask the Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition

Whether he will furnish Mr T A Le Goff with a (a) list and (b) full description of all events planned by his department to take place before 29 May 2024 in celebration of the 30 years of democracy in the Republic, including the (i) projected total cost or expenditure of each event and (ii) breakdown thereof in terms of expenditure for (aa) catering, (bb) entertainment, (cc) venue hire, (dd) transport and (ee) accommodation; if not, why not; if so, what are the relevant details?

Reply:

South Africa has made considerable progress in the past 30 years in rebuilding a society deeply damaged by apartheid and colonialism.

I am informed by the Department that the normal events of the Department, including end of Administration report-backs and meetings, will be an opportunity to also reflect on progress made during the 30 years of the democratic era. Accordingly, there is no separate budget as no events specific only to the celebrations are planned.

We will proudly carry the logo of 30 Years of Democracy in publications and presentations of the normal work of the Department and the story of progress made will be communicated in the messages of the Ministry and Department.

-END-

29 April 2024 - NW784

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Bergman, Mr D to ask the Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition

(1) (a) What is the total number of positions at executive level at the National Gambling Board that have been offered as (i) contract and (ii) permanent positions and (b) which of the positions were (i) on contract and (ii) permanent positions from 1 January 2023 to 29 February 2024; (2) (a) what was the basis for the decision to make each job on contract or on permanent position? NW962E

Reply:

The National Gambling Board (NGB) has informed the Department that no Executive level appointments were made during the period 1 January 2023 to 24 February 2024. However, an Acting Chief Technology Officer was appointed in September 2023. The NGB has advised that the vacant Executive position Chief Technology Officer has been advertised.

-END-

29 April 2024 - NW682

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Graham, Ms SJ to ask the Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition

(1)With reference to the Energy One Stop Shop for independent power producers, what is the latest update on the (a) status of the operation and (b) progress made to date; (2) whether there is any level of authority for expediting the licensing process; if not, who is responsible; if so, what are the relevant details; (3) what (a) problems have been identified with the system, (b) measures are being taken to rectify the identified problems, (c) on what date does he envisage the (i) identified problems will be resolved and (ii) system will be established and fully functional?

Reply:

The following reply has been compiled by the Energy One Stop Shop, and Invest SA.

(1) The EOSS was launched on the 27th July 2023 at the dtic Campus.

The following have been actioned since the launch:

  • Website launched and operational – www.energyoss.gov.za
  • Registration Portal for Energy Projects live and operational.
  • Tracking and Monitoring Database operational.
  • Technical Working Group established (with all relevant Departments)
  • Partnerships forged with Key Industry Stakeholders (e.g. MOU with Energy Council of SA).
  • Linkages with Key Government Entities (Presidency, IDC, NEF, Infrastructure SA, IPPPP Office).
  • Representation on various Working Groups (Legal and Regulatory Workstream, ESKOM Transmission Workstream and NECOM).
  • Single Window Application Implementation Plan developed with the IFC (World Bank Group) and currently being reviewed by various Industry Bodies through the Energy Council of South Africa (ECSA). Support of the IFC is valued at approximately US 1,5 million. The envisaged implementation date is 1st quarter 2025.
  • The first phase of Mapping of Municipal processes and standardised procedures conducted by UK Pact Consultants and will be concluded by the end of October. Support by the UK Pact programme is valued at R1,5 million.
  • Escalation letters have been sent to Municipalities where applicable.
  • EOSS participated in various Energy Related Events (Conferences, Indaba’s and Workshops, Energy Action Lab) Nationally and Provincially.
  • As part of the EOSS task to develop processes and mechanisms to fast track and unlock challenges (licensing and permitting approvals) experienced by developers, it was determined that a Single Window Application approach should be followed to streamline the application process for developers of energy projects. This is also supported by the Energy Council of South Africa as one of the interventions and outlined in the proposed Omnibus Bill.
  • As several Departments are the Competent Authorities in their areas of expertise (e.g. DFFE), the various processes at these Departments had to be mapped to determine the extent to which overlaps exists. Through the support of the International Finance Corporation (IFC) these processes have been mapped (approval processes, timelines and checklists), recommendations made and an implementation action plan proposed. This has been shared with Industry through the Energy Council of South Africa (ECSA) for review and comments. Once amended the implementation plan will be socialised with all the relevant Departments for adoption and execution. Currently the EOSS together with the Departments are looking into the harmonisation of all IT Systems to develop the streamlined Single Window Application System. The anticipated date for the pilot will be ready for testing by 3rd quarter of 2024 and full implementation by the 1st quarter for 2025.
  • A parallel process was embarked upon, of mapping approval and permitting processes for Energy Projects at municipal level and the impact of these on the implementation of Energy Projects. The workstream has been engaging with Municipalities, Developers, Departments and the Energy Industry to determine the effectiveness of the approval and permitting process at Municipal level. The first phase of the project came to an end in October 2023.

The EOSS received 114 projects from the Presidential Embedded Generation Task Team to track and unlock bottlenecks encountered by Energy Developers (mainly independent power producers IPPs). These projects are at various stages of development. Of the 114 projects, 26 were prioritised for immediate focus after consultations with developers and owners of projects. 2 projects were cancelled by developers and four (4) acquired SIP status, thus the EOSS is tracking 20 projects that have a few remaining challenges. The 114 projects upon receipt equated to 16 859MW and R109 billion in potential investment. In addition, besides IPP projects the EOSS unblocks for companies encountering challenges with municipalities and Eskom such as PG Bison, Teraco, Humtamaki amongst others.

 

The dashboard below outlines what the EOSS is currently tracking in terms of the Priority Projects:

EOSS DASHBOARD:

The dashboard below outlines what the EOSS is currently tracking in terms of the Priority Projects:

EOSS DASHBOARD:

Priority Projects Received: 26

Projects Cancelled: (2 by developers)

Projects Transferred to SIP: 4

Remaining Projects: 20 (1624,5MW)

Projects Unlocked: 6 = 517,5MW: (Damlaagte - 97,5MW; Sutherland 2

- 140MW; Cennergi - 80MW; Tronox - 200MW, Mogalakwena, PPC Sturdee are on hold because Developer uncertainty e.g. Grid Connections)

Projects Operational: 4 = 78,5MW: Harmony Gold (Eland, Nyala,

Tshepong), Gold Fields South Deep

Projects Tracked: 10

Current Challenges: 14 (Land Use, Mining rights, Water rights, ESKOM, Municipal approvals) Commercial Operational Date: 2023 – 2026 (10 Projects).

In the pipeline of remaining 88 projects are 20 updated projects (3136MW) with challenges across Departments and Municipalities. The 20 were prioritised by Developers after the EOSS engagement with them. The anticipated commercial operational dates are between 2024-2027. The EOSS in conjunction with the Departmental Technical Working Group (TWG) is working towards unblocking all challenges encountered.

In addition, through the EOSS live portal, 44 project leads have been identified covering wind, solar, gas and hybrid technologies. Of these the EOSS are tracking 17 projects of 5576 MW.

(2) Whether there is any level of authority for expediting the licensing process; if not who is responsible if so, what are the relevant details;

  • Yes, a Technical Work Group, consisting of all the relevant Departments that are Competent Authorities. The EOSS TWG was established with the support of NECOM (National Energy Crisis Committee). Memorandums of Understanding (MOUs) between EOSS and the Departments are in the final stage of being signed – it is envisaged that it would be concluded in the first half of 2024.
  • Competent Authorities have given undertakings at NECOM to shorten approval process within the legislated time frames e.g. DFFE are now able to process application with decisions within 57 days for a Basic Assessment if in a Renewable Energy Development Zone (REDZ) and the EOSS are tracking projects based on these.
  • The EOSS reports to two NECOM Workstreams (Legal and Regulatory WS2) and Transmission (WS10). These structures meet every 2nd week or once a month but it also reports to the Ministry and Presidency on a regular basis. The TWG has met more the 8 times – going forward it plans to meet once a quarter as soon as the electronic automated tracking and reporting system for the EOSS has been developed.
  • The EOSS also has an MOU with the Energy Council of South Africa – it provides technical advisory and capacity building services to the EOSS Team.

(3) What (a) problems have been identified with the system, (b) measures are being taken to rectify the identified problems, (c) on what date does he envisage the (i) identified problems will be resolved and (ii) system will be established and fully functional?

a) Delays in approvals by some Departments and Agencies (e.g. ESKOM – Cost Estimate Letters (CELs) and Budget Quotes (BQs).

b) Challenges that IPPs are encountering with Departments and Entities are addressed and resolved by EOSS through TWG members. Municipalities remain the biggest challenge as there is a lack of standardised processes in place to deal with Renewable Energy Projects (both in terms of Human Resources and Expertise). A Mapping exercise was embarked upon by the EOSS and a report with recommendations outlining intervention was developed. Through greater coordination led by the EOSS in conjunction with SALGA and COGTA in supporting municipalities, the EOSS for example with the support of the Presidency and Office of the Premier in the Free State unlocked some major project challenges for Developers such as Sunelex Solar Power in the Matjhabeng Municipality – 605MW.

c) Unresolved challenges outside reasonable and stipulated time-frames are escalated to the PMO in the Presidency and NEOCOM for intervention. Challenges are escalated once evaluated and severity determined. A single windows application and tracking system is being developed to automate and harmonise processes – the envisaged fully operational date is end of Q1 2025 subject to budget availability.

-END-

29 April 2024 - NW575

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Bergman, Mr D to ask the Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition

Whether any (a) performance bonuses and (b) salary increases were awarded to the Chief Executive Officer of the National Gambling Board (NGB), who is also the Chief Strategic Advisor of the NGB, in any of the past ten financial years; if not, what is the position in this regard; if so, (i) what was the total amount awarded, (ii) in what financial year was the bonus and/or salary increase awarded, (iii) who approved the bonus and/or salary increase and (iv) upon what criteria was the bonus and/or salary increase awarded?

Reply:

The Department has commenced an investigation into matters relating to the National Gambling Board, initially focused on the procurement of the building. A forensic investigating company has been appointed in this regard.

A further briefing by the Department relating to remuneration and authorization for overseas travel has raised governance questions relating to these matters. This will now be included in the forensic investigation.

The Department is also considering what appropriate immediate steps should be taken in addition to the above.

Once the investigation is complete, the necessary actions will be taken where warranted, and a report will be submitted to Parliament.

-END-

29 April 2024 - NW841

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Bergman, Mr D to ask the Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition

(1)What is the total capital expenditure allocated for the 2025 medium-term budget for the SA Bureau of Standards; (2) whether the specified amount will cover the facilities and laboratory expansion project; if not, how will the specified project be funded; if so, what are the relevant details? NW1021E

Reply:

The South African Bureau of Standards advises that a capital expansion plan of R376.0 million has been budgeted for in the Corporate Plan for FY 2024/25 to 2026/27.

The R376.0 million capital budget is focused mainly on three (3) areas, namely Laboratory Services, Facilities, and Information & Communication Technology. The capital budget will be funded through a combination of grant funding from the fiscus and own funds.

-END-

29 April 2024 - NW786

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Bergman, Mr D to ask the Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition

What number of roles (a) are currently vacant since the restructuring of the SA Bureau of Standards and (b) will be advertised in the next six months?

Reply:

The South African Bureau of Standards has furnished me with the following response to the question:

As part of the Turnaround Plan, the SABS undertook an organisational review exercise with the objective of determining a suitable Operating Model and a fit for purpose Organisational Structure which got approved by the Administrators following extensive consultations with the SABS employees. The new structure has 829 positions, but the management agreed to freeze 71 posts due to budget constraints. That left a total of 758 posts. To fill these positions, some of which were new, others redefined, the matching and placement process was undertaken and concluded in October 2023.

As at 31 March 2024, 662 of 758 positions were filled.

Of the 96 posts, the management has prioritised the filling of 59 vacancies due to further financial constraints. These will be filled as follows:

  • 37 in 2024/25, and
  • 22 in 2025/26, subject to the availability of funding.

-END-

18 March 2024 - NW450

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Graham, Ms SJ to ask the Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition

(1)Whether the transaction by the National Gambling Board to purchase the property at 1085 Frances Baard Street, Hatfield, has been finalised; if not; what is the position in this regard; if so, (a) on what date was the transaction concluded and (b) what was the cost of the building; (2) whether all supply chain processes were followed in the procurement process; if not, why not; if so, (a) did he approve the transaction in terms of Section 54 of the Public Finance Management Act, Act 1 of 1999 and (b) on what date was the specified approval granted; (3) whether the transaction has been approved by the National Treasury according to the stipulations of the specified Act; if not, why not; if so, (a) on what date did the National Treasury approve the transaction and (b) what are the relevant details?

Reply:

Following information received from the National Gambling Board (NGB) relating to this transaction, I have requested the Director-General to further engage the NGB on information required and processes followed and provide me with a Report. A supplementary reply will be provided once the information has been received.

-END-

11 March 2024 - NW321

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George, Dr DT to ask the Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition

Whether, considering the participation of the delegation of the Republic in the World Economic Forum (WEF) 2024 that took place in Davos-Klosters, Switzerland, from 15 to 19 January 2024, his department bore the financial responsibility for the expenses of its representatives in terms of (a) accommodation, (b) air travel, (c) ground transportation and (d) any other ancillary expenses, if so, what are the relevant details in terms of the (i) total cost and (ii) breakdown thereof, if not (2) Whether the specified expense were covered by funds received from the National Treasury, if not, what is the position in this regard, if so, what are the relevant details? NW364E

Reply:

The World Economic Forum (WEF) 2024, which took place in Davos-Klosters, Switzerland, from 15 to 19 January 2024, provided South Africa an opportunity to engage international investors and policy-makers.

I was accompanied by the Acting DDG Invest SA and two DTIC permanent representatives to Geneva. The department’s appropriated budget covered all expenses.

The engagements and activities included

  • More than 15 separate sessions with investors in sectors such as beverages, transport-logistics, energy, steel, engineering and retail.
  • Meetings with a number of trade and economic ministers from across the world, including Norway, the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Netherlands and Oman and with government advisors from Nigeria
  • A meeting with the European Union Vice President and Trade Commissioner on SA-EU trade matters and on the WTO
  • A session with a US Senator, covering SA-US trade and investment relations
  • Participating as a speaker in panels dealing with development and with SMME promotion in value-chains
  • A ‘South Africa Investment’ session hosted by Bloomberg
  • Separate meetings with the Director General of the WTO and with the Secretary General of the AfCFTA
  • Participation in a number of briefing sessions on global policy matters, including by the Premier of China and the US Secretary of State
  • A WTO session attended by officials.

I am advised the total cost was R802 000, made up of accommodation, air travel, and ground transportation, food, subsistence and travel costs.

-END-

08 March 2024 - NW351

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Le Goff, Mr T to ask the Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition

What are the full details of all (a) sponsorships, (b) donations and (c) financial transfers provided for lawfare and/or any other purposes to (i) him, (ii) his department and (iii) officials of his department by any (aa) Qatari, (bb) Iranian and/or (cc) Russian organ of state, organisation and/or resident since 1 January 2021 up to the latest date in 2024 for which information is available?

Reply:

I have not received any sponsorships, donations or financial transfers from any of the mentioned States or their organs of state.

I am also informed that neither the department nor the department’s officials received any sponsorships, donations, or financial transfers from any of the mentioned organisations.

-END-

08 March 2024 - NW217

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Lekota, Mr M to ask the Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition

(1)Whether the Government had created or is in the process of creating a retrofitting ecosystem for transitioning from internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles to electric vehicles (EVs) through the development of (a) a white paper and strategic frameworks, (b) tax breaks and (c) subsidies and/or grants for converting ICE vehicles to EVs, thereby (i) establishing safety standards for retrofitting processes, (ii) working closely with component manufacturers, (iii) encouraging partnerships to develop cost-effective retrofit kits, (iv) promoting retrofitting technologies and (v) collaborating with universities and research institutions; if not, why not; if so, what ecosystem is being created; (2) whether he has created an ecosystem to help young persons in large numbers to acquire the skills to help present owners of cars to retrofit them as EVs; if not, why not; if so, what are the relevant details? NW228E

Reply:

(1) Retrofitting in the automotive industry refers to the practice of replacing internal combustion engines (ICE) in vehicles with an electric motor and large storage batteries, making them electric vehicles (EVs). This practice thus means that an old or used vehicle is fitted with modified or new equipment for alternative propulsion than initially designed for.

In the case of retrofitting, the manufacturer of the original vehicle provides no warranty or assurance of its integrity as the fitment of non-original parts generally compromises the vehicle as it deviates from the original specifications for safety and other parameters.

The government focuses on supporting the mass production of new vehicles that can be distributed globally and meet stringent homologation requirements. Vehicle assemblers provide warranties on their originally-built vehicles and components thus giving consumers relative comfort and confidence that such vehicles are of acceptable and good standard.

 

a) In light of the above, government has collaborated with key stakeholders including vehicle assembler OEMs, Component Manufacturers and other stakeholders such as Research institutions in developing an EV White Paper that was published in December 2023. This White Paper seeks to create an environment supportive to investment for and production of electric vehicles and components in response to the global transition from ICE to EVs.

b) The National Treasury has announced through the Budget Speech on the 22 February 2024, the introduction of a tax support mechanism for EV production with effect from April 2026. Details of this tax support will be published in due course following the adoption of implementation guidelines.

c) EV manufacturing will in addition to the tax support also benefit from the Automotive Production and Development Programme (APDP). The APDP supports the manufacturing of vehicles on a completely knock-down basis and not retrofitting.

The objectives of the EV White Paper are to:

• Provide additional investment funding to attract investment in the local production of electric vehicles and components.

• Promote access for these locally produced vehicles to regional and global markets.

• Deepen the automotive value chain by promoting regional cooperation for the local beneficiation of critical minerals.

• Promote uptake of locally produced vehicles through fleets including government.

• Develop requisite skills to support the transition to electric vehicles through partnerships with industry and academic institutions.

(i) Ensuring safety standards is critical for the transition to EV production. Therefore, all EV vehicles will be homologated in line with applicable regulations of the South African Bureau of Standards (SABS) and the National Regulator for Compulsory Specifications (NRCS).

(ii) The vehicle component manufacturers represented by the National Association of Automotive Component and Allied Manufacturers (NAACAM) are key stakeholders in the growth of the local automotive industry. Thus, they continued to be actively involved in the development of the framework for the transition to EVs. The component manufacturing industry accounts for the lion's share of jobs in the automotive industry, over 70% of the total employment in the automotive industry in 2022.

(iii) The success of the transition requires all stakeholders to continue to work collaboratively to navigate this challenging transition and transform it into an opportunity for growth, sustainability, and economic vitality. There is an established industry stakeholder engagement platform called the Executive Oversight Committee (EOC) to oversee the implementation of the SAAM 2035. Its mandate will be expanded to include overseeing the implementation of the EV White Paper. Therefore, there is a requirement for the active participation of additional stakeholders including those in Logistics (rail and electricity), technology developers (innovation, research, and technology commercialisation), EV support infrastructure (charging facilities providers, emergency services providers). It will also include those involved in marketing SA capabilities to position South Africa as a production and demand destination for EVs and related components.

(iv) Technology changes are at the core of this transition. This includes the introduction of new raw materials and components, while some ICE-specific components are expected to become obsolete over time. These changes in the supply chain are resulting in the re-organisation of the global value chain with the growing importance of locations that can supply EV-specific components.

(v) the dtic has collaborated with Research institutions and entities mainly as service providers during the development of the EV White paper which is the culmination of substantial research and engagement over the last number of years and follows the publication of a green paper in 2021, a process of receiving public comments, which have been integrated into the policy actions to be taken. This collaboration continues during the transition to EV production.

(2) The EV White Paper focusses on the manufacturing of electric vehicles and their components rather than on retrofitting used vehicles. This focus will mitigate potential job-losses due to the transition to e-mobility as EVs have fewer components and also ensure that South Africa remains a viable manufacturing location in the global setting.

The EV transition requires new certification programs and extensive reskilling to produce and use the associated new technologies. To this end, the industry has completed a Comprehensive Skills Gap Analysis that covers the Labour Market Analysis which gives the future occupations, and the Competency Analysis which gives the future competencies. To address the skills gaps, five roadmaps have been developed.

As part of the implementation of the roadmaps, MerSETA, the Department of Higher Education, and the automotive industry are developing the EV curriculum and certificate. The main beneficiaries will be young people with the automotive industry setting a target of 10 000 learnerships and apprenticeships by 2035.

-END-

08 March 2024 - NW216

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Loate, Mr T to ask the Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition

Whether, in view of the fact that major importers of South African manufactured vehicles, such as the United Kingdom and Europe, will no longer allow the importation of internal combustion engine vehicles by 2030, and that funders, including banks, are ready right now to support the transition to electric vehicles (EVs), and considering that Morocco is stepping into the EV arena with plans for an African-designed EV set to debut in 2026, the Government has been galvanised into action to get manufacturers to modify their manufacturing plants for hybrid and EV production as swiftly as possible; if not, why not; if so, what steps has the Government taken to remain ahead of the curve; 2. what steps has he taken to ensure that the Republic’s status as an exporter of motor vehicles remains secure, both in the interest of job preservation and economic growth; 3. whether he provided the motor vehicle manufacturing industry with a clear plan of action and a roadmap; if not, why not; if so, what are the relevant details?

Reply:

South Africa currently exports around 63% of its vehicle production, making it imperative to consider global developments in the auto industry. Major export markets such as the EU and the UK have announced bans on internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicle sales by 2035, accompanied by incentives for electric vehicle (EV) adoption. This global shift towards environmentally friendly transportation is expected to reduce demand for vehicles manufactured in South Africa.

Following extensive work undertaken both with industry and within government, a White Paper was finalised by Cabinet, setting out the policy framework for the technology, production, export and domestic market adoption of electric vehicles, as well as a detailed roadmap and plan of action. The White Paper was publicly released in December 2023.

Subsequently, the Minister of Finance released details of tax benefits that will be available to the industry to facilitate the transition. In addition, discussions have been held with auto-producers not yet in the SA market to encourage new investment in the sector.

While existing policies like the Automotive Production Development Programme and the Automotive Investment Scheme provide a good framework for developing EV productive capacity, including in assembly and component manufacture, additional action will be required. The White Paper thus identifies 10 policy goals with a set of 16 specific and distinct policy actions to be implemented over specified timelines between 2023 and 2035 with 10 actions in support of the development of cost-competitive EV productive capacity in South Africa; and 6 actions in support of the development of a cost-effective local market for EVs.

A copy of the White Paper may be accessed at http://www.thedtic.gov.za/wp-content/uploads/EV-White-Paper.pdf

-END-

08 March 2024 - NW306

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Bergman, Mr D to ask the Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition

What were the outcomes of the eight disciplinary referrals made by the Special Investigating Unit to the National Lottery Commission against their own employees? NW347E

Reply:

The National Lotteries Commission has furnished me with the attached response to the question.

-END-

08 March 2024 - NW294

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George, Dr DT to ask the Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition

(a) What are the reasons that there has been a delay in tabling a resolution for the accession of the Republic to the Marrakesh VIP Treaty and (b) how does the delay align with the commitment to uphold the rights of the visually impaired?

Reply:

a) Because an international agreement will be binding on South Africa, the country must be able to maintain its international obligations in terms of the Treaty to which it has acceded. In order to accede to the Marrakesh Treaty, it is necessary therefore to finalise amendments to the Copyright Act, Act 98 of 1978. The Copyright Amendment Bill that addresses these matters was passed by the National Assembly recently, for referral to the President for assent.

b) The Constitutional Court found Section 13 of the Copyright Act to be unconstitutional. In its order, the court read into the Copyright Act, 1978 an exception that allows persons who are blind and visually impaired to convert published works into accessible formats without the consent of the copyright holder. The judgment thus offered the blind and visually impaired remedies with immediate effect. This exception is valid for a period of 2 years until 20 September 2024 pending the approval of the Copyright Amendment Bill, to ensure that the rights of the blind and visually impaired are not compromised. Clause 19D of the Copyright Amendment Bill extends to persons with disabilities such as learning disabilities, dyslexia etc and not only for the blind and visually impaired.

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29 February 2024 - NW22

Profile picture: Cebekhulu, Inkosi RN

Cebekhulu, Inkosi RN to ask the Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition

What measures has his department put in place to ensure that logistical woes, such as operational challenges and equipment failures at ports, do not impede the ability of the Republic to trade and export products, as was the case across three provinces in 2023?

Reply:

A well-functioning transport and logistics system is vital to unlock the opportunities presented by trade, to grow the SA economy and create jobs.

The Department of Trade, Industry and Competition (the dtic) supports efforts by the Department of Public Enterprises (DPE) to address challenges at ports and find permanent and systemic solutions. A workstream has been put in place by DPE and the Presidency with the private sector, which enables skilled personnel to assist with improving the country’s logistics systems. the dtic attends the oversight meetings convened by the Presidency.

Companies from time to time approach the dtic with specific challenges relating to a shipment of cargo. the dtic engages Transnet on these in order to resolve them.

The DPE will be best placed to provide information on the measures taken to date to address the challenges and the progress made.

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29 February 2024 - NW54

Profile picture: Cuthbert, Mr MJ

Cuthbert, Mr MJ to ask the Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition

Whether, with reference to his reply to question 4227 on 2 January 2024, he will furnish Mr M J Cuthbert with a (a) full list of companies under each of the investment sectors listed in Table 1 and (b) breakdown of each company, split by debt or Equity, for each investment sector?

Reply:

The IDC’s investment portfolio in terms of exposure, is currently at R98.9 billion, made up of R65.7 billion (66%) in Debt and R33.2 billion (34%) in Equity. Debt investments are those that are classified as Solely Payments of Principal and Interest (SPPI) and Equity investments are classified as Non-SPPI. The Mining Sector comprises the most significant exposure at 38%, followed by Chemicals (17%) and Energy (12%). Details are as shown in Table 1 below.

Table 1: IDC Portfolio Per Sector

 

Full list of companies under each of the investment sectors listed in Table 1