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B-BBEE Isn't Working

The latest report from the B-BBEE Commission highlights everything wrong with a policy that has long overstayed its welcome.

B-BBEE Isn't Working

Last week the B-BBEE Commission released its annual report on the state of broad-based black economic empowerment, and then immediately (and unsurprisingly) lambasted the slow pace of transformation. Which is bizarre, because 80% of sectors have achieved or exceeded their black ownership targets.

Here's the complete table from the Commission's official report:

(Notice the title for that table? Anyone else find it a little odd that the Commission chose to highlight one of only two sectors below target, instead of celebrating the fact that the vast majority have transformed?)

The Commission has also moaned about how changes in black ownership do not always correspond to changes in management control. Which is equally bizarre because ownership, not management control, is precisely what got prioritised when the Codes were amended back in 2013.

What the Commission has conveniently chosen to overlook is that the private sector is light years ahead of government itself. For the third straight year, over 40% of JSE-listed companies submitted B-BBEE reports, while less than 20% of state entities did the same. Furthermore, only 25% of JSE-listed companies are non-compliant, compared to almost 40% of government bodies.

So, in summary:

1. The private sector has almost unanimously achieved their ownership transformation targets.

2. Organs of state don't care about complying with B-BBEE.

3. The B-BBEE Commission is incapable of accurate, objective reporting.

B-BBEE is a dead horse that should be shipped off to a glue factory instead of beaten any further. The convoluted mechanics, racial identity politics, and obsession with wealth redistribution over wealth creation are an anchor to our past instead of a bridge to a better future.