ATC140219: Report of the Portfolio Committee on Economic Development on the redrafted Infrastructure Development Bill [B 49B―2013] (National Assembly – sec 76), dated 18 February 2014:
Report of the Portfolio Committee on Economic
Development on the redrafted Infrastructure Development Bill [B 49B―2013]
(National Assembly sec 76), dated 18 February 2014:
(National Assembly proposed sec 75) was referred to the Portfolio Committee on
Economic Development (the Committee) for consideration and report on 4
November 2013, and subsequently classified by the Joint Tagging Mechanism as a
section 76 Bill.
A number of key
issues were addressed by the Committee during its deliberations on the Bill,
following the Economic Development Departments response to comments received
from the public:
Clarifying the intention of the Bill without
changing the objects thereof, as broadly outlined in clause 2 in the Bill.
Addressing arguments presented regarding the
constitutional powers of the three spheres of Government as assigned by the
Constitution of the Republic of South Africa, 1996 (the Constitution), so as
to avoid possible encroachment of provincial or local government powers.
Recognising that the Bill does not compromise
the importance of sustainability and environmental justice considerations, as
reflected in existing legislation such as the National Environmental Management
Act, 1998 (NEMA), without unnecessary duplication.
Ensuring that the Bill allows for reasonable
timeframes and consultation, with due regard to the existence of circumstances
that may require justifiable extensions.
Clarifying the structures and composition of the
Presidential Infrastructure Coordinating Commission (PICC), noting the need to
distinguish the leading structure of the PICC from the set of structures that
constitute the PICC as a whole. Thus, the term Council was recommended to
distinguish the overall body (the Commission) from the decision-making
structure without changing the existing composition, functions and mandates of
Reviewing the developmental impact criteria
to include reference to womens empowerment and persons with disabilities.
Expanding the scope of the Bill with regard
to the role of the private sector by the introduction of an amendment to
clarify that the private infrastructure projects may only be included in a
strategic integrated project (SIP) with the consent of the owner. The definition
of public infrastructure covered by the Bill was further amended to ensure that
it includes Private Public Partnerships (PPPs) and Concessions.
Reformulating clause 5 to strengthen the procedures
for expropriation for purposes of implementing a strategic integrated project,
in compliance with the Constitution and relevant legislation.
Recognising, with regard to the provision relating
to designation and implementation of strategic integrated projects, that
for the Commission to designate a SIP through the Commissions Council, on
which all three spheres of government are represented;
provides the Commission, through a designated
Minister, with authority to request relevant authorities to call for tenders
for projects in order to ensure coordination; and
coordinates and aligns infrastructure
Supporting the addition of Schedule 3 to the
Bill, listing 18 SIPs of the National Infrastructure Plan, as the Committee
understood the Bill to also give legal effect to already existing structures
and practices, thereby requiring facilitation of continuity in the structures
of SIP implementation.
Committee further supported the intention of the Bill that every organ of state
must ensure that its
of infrastructure or its future spatial planning and land use is not in
conflict with any SIP designated by the PICC.
objections were however also noted. The Committee accordingly further reports,
in accordance with National Assembly Rule 251(e
and (ii), that the Democratic Alliance (DA) recorded objections, amongst others,
on the following matters:
the title of the Bill, as the DA indicated
that since the Bill is meant to ensure effective coordination of infrastructure
projects, it should be titled The Strategic Infrastructure Coordinating Bill;
clause 8 of the Bill, on the basis that it
encroached on the powers and functioning of Provincial Authorities and
Municipalities and would interfere with spatial planning; and
Schedule 2 of the Bill, indicating that the
timeframes were irrational.
Subsequent to the
above, the Democratic Alliance abstained from voting on the Bill.
and procedural advice and took note that specific amendments were introduced to
address concerns relating to:
The powers and functions of all three spheres of government, with a new
provision that requires powers in the Act to be exercised in a manner that is
consistent with the Constitution and, in particular, with the functional
competencies of the different spheres of government; and
The timeframes for public consultation in Schedule 2, to provide that an
executive authority may extend the period on good grounds.
The Committee also
appreciates the input made by the public during the processing of the Bill.
The Committee accordingly presents a redraft of the Bill [B 49B―2013]
for consideration by the National Assembly.
unanimously by 10 votes.
No dissenting votes.
Report to be
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