• October 24th, 2020

CIF raises concern about clarity of empowerment Bill

If one were to focus on the National Equitable Economic Empowerment Bill (NEEEB) in its latest format as an instrument to address poverty and inequality, one of the biggest concerns is that NEEEB has not allayed any fears and made people more appeased with government’s commitment that people’s ownership rights will not be affected, and that their livelihoods will not be threatened. This is according to the Construction Industries Federation (CIF). 

A statement from CIF notes that the construction industry and various members of the public have called for more certainty regarding NEEEB in order to plan and act accordingly. 
“That need for certainty was particularly linked to whether or not NEEEB would become enacted, and if indeed it would, what then would the respective pillars and standards be. Certainty around that normally is crucial information for any current business person, and potential investors, be it a Namibian domestic investor or foreign direct investment,” read the statement. 

 Bärbel Kirchner, consulting general manager of the CIF said: “NEEEB in its current format, due to its vagueness, does not provide the required certainty. There is no clarity what the standard would be relating to each pillar and whether indeed compliance with a respective pillar would be compulsory or voluntarily. The assigned minister in this role would then have an unrealistically high authority to determine the standards and the legislation’s applicability.”

Kirchner added that at the same time, there is no clarity with regard to which business types might be affected, as according to NEEEB, it would relate to ‘any economic activity’. She continued that it was also unclear if measures to be taken because of NEEEB would ever end, as the Bill currently does not include a sunset clause.  

“Related administrative processes appear to be extensive, which would increase bureaucracy and an overall burden to business.  There is already uncertainty as to how it might affect public procurement. It appeared that under the current Procurement Act (2015), joint ventures with foreign companies were already favoured,” said Kirchner.  

Staff Reporter
2020-07-21 11:57:34 | 3 months ago


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