Telkom shares held by government to count as having BEE Facilitator Status

The Telkom tower in Pretoria from Fort Klapperkop, with the Union buildings in the background. Image: iStock

The Telkom tower in Pretoria from Fort Klapperkop, with the Union buildings in the background. Image: iStock

The telecommunications giant was optimistic that this would improve Telkom’s BEE rating and enable it to compete fairly in the market.

The B-BBEE ICT Sector Council on Thursday welcomed the announcement by the Minister for Trade and Industry, Dr Rob Davies, that the shares held by government in Telkom would count as having BEE Facilitator Status.

Chairperson of the ICT Sector Council Andile Tlhoaele, said that this would improve Telkom’s BEE rating and enable it to compete fairly in the market. “The ICT Sector Council had engaged with Telkom and the Department of Telecommunications and Postal Services to support this move and is delighted that Telkom can move forward with transforming the telecommunications sub-sector.”

The B-BBEE ICT Sector Council (the ICT Sector Council) was established in 2015 to give effect to the alignment of the ICT Sector Code with the Revised Generic Codes of Good Practice and to thereafter take responsibility for transformation within the ICT Sector.

The Amended ICT Sector Code came into force on November 7 2016 and covers entities in the Broadcasting, Electronics, Information Technology and Telecommunications sub-sectors. Telkom SA SOC Ltd (Telkom) is a measured entity in terms of the Amended ICT Sector Code, recognised as a BEE Level 4 Contributor for the period 2018/2019.

The ICT Sector Council said it understood the unique position of Telkom insofar as ownership was concerned, with the South African Government as a shareholder.

“The ICT Sector Council is sympathetic towards Telkom’s wish to achieve recognition as a BEE Contributor at the best possible level in order to be competitive and to support transformation in the supply chain. It is our understanding of the BEE Facilitator Status that it is intended to enable measured entities that benefit from public funding that is secured by shares in such entities to have the Black ownership of these shares recognised.”

Following the publication of Notice 58 of 2019 dated 1 February 2019, the ICT Sector Council investigated the origin of the application for BEE Facilitator Status and consulted with stakeholders to establish the potential implications of such status for transformation within the Sector.

The ICT Sector Council is responsible for developing, reviewing and publishing the B-BBEE Amended ICT Sector Code (the ICT Sector Code). The ICT Sector Council is also mandated to monitor the implementation of the ICT Sector Code and report its progress to Minister Stella Ndabeni-Abrahams, President Cyril Ramaphosa’s Advisory Council on BEE, Minister Dr Rob Davies and the B-BBEE Commissioner Zodwa Ntuli.

– African News Agency (ANA)

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