Roads agency to intensify support to black business

JANUARY 12, 2018

Established businesses, particularly white-owned, with existing contracts with SANRAL should assist the roads agency to realise its transformation objectives if they still wish to continue doing business with SANRAL.

That was the resounding message from SANRAL chief executive officer Skhumbuzo Macozoma at a business function recently held at the East London International Convention Centre.

The South African National Roads Agency (SOC) Ltd (SANRAL) manages 4 952 km of roads in the Eastern Cape – 22% of its total 22 190 km which spans all nine provinces.

SANRAL’s flagship in the province is the N2 Wild Coast project, the 410 km stretch of road from East London to the Mtavuna River on the border between the Eastern Cape and KwaZulu-Natal. The agency also has some 116 projects in the initiation, design and construction stages in different parts of the province over the next three years.

Macozoma said the roads agency is unwavering in its commitment to ensure inclusive participation of black South Africans in the opportunities generated by SANRAL's annual financial investment in the construction sector and related industries.

“We are geared to roll out the policy on 01 April 2018. However, ultimately our implementation date is subject to the approval of the policy by the Minister and also Cabinet,” he said.

Since 2009, SANRAL has injected R33.3 billion in the provincial road network. Of this, R11.7 billion was allocated for the past two years - R5 billion in 2016/17 and R6.7 billion for the current financial year ending in March 2018.

However, only 10% of SANRAL’s national R20 billion expenditure in 2016/17 was spent on black SMMEs.

“Changing this trend is a non-negotiable,” Macozoma said. “We want to see more black women, youth, people with disabilities and military veterans getting a sizeable increase in our spend and participating in our bursary and scholarship programmes, internships and [Port-Elizabeth based] Technical Excellence Academy.”

In essence, the success of SANRAL’s transformation policy rests on six levers:

  • Ownership: buy-in from the large construction sector
  • Equitable access to contracts: across the Construction Industry Development Board grades  
  • Community empowerment: with emphasis on local sourcing
  • Supply chains: black business access to equipment and materials
  • Healthy competition: including toll operations and other supporting sectors in SANRAL’s business
  • SMME and emerging contractor development.

The session was attended by more than 100 delegates including some kings, traditional leaders and structures of the provincial Congress of Traditional Leaders of South Africa (Contralesa) youth wing, as well as the South African National Civic Organisation (Sanco), South African Women in Construction (SAWIC), EC Black Contractors Association, Small Enterprise Development Agency (Seda), individual contractors and several youth business chambers from different parts of the province.

SANRAL’s commitment to transforming the construction sector was commended by those in attendance. 

Contact Franchisee Darren John
Border contact number 082 783 7457
Border email address darren@homefoodandtravel.co.za