Update – What is happening with BEE

I am often asked what is happening, if I think one or other rumour is true. I have made a short list of some of the more prevalent comments and misconceptions about BEE. If I think of any more I will definitely add them.

Rating Agencies
Currently there are no accredited rating agencies. If you have been requested to get a rating I would always suggest get it, but try hold off for as long as possible. The ideal situation is to do a self rating. Rating agencies can only be accredited once the codes have been finalised (see next point). When the codes have been finalised SANAS and the dti will start appointing accredited rating agencies. I estimate that process taking about 6-10 months once the codes have been finalised. For now if you do get a rating choose wisely because their are plenty sub-standard companies who are ready to make a quick 10K.

Codes of Good Practice
They are currently still in draft format. They were expected to be published in November 06. The new deadline is December 06. Cabinet has asked for some changes to be made. I think the process may take longer to complete and a more feasible target is Feb/Mar 07. It would be considerably better for government to get the codes out by December.

QSE’s can do a self rating
We have heard this from a number of reliable sources from newspaper articles to speaking to government officials. This makes sense, the only possible way for every company in the country to be rated is to get each company to do a lot of the work themselves – i.e. self rating.

The QSE and EME thresholds will be increased
It makes sense for the thresholds to be increased. In the case of the QSE thresholds they could come inline with the Small Business Act which has recently been updated.

The EME has had a lot of talk about it over the last couple of days. Some companies have reported that it could be as much a R5m/annum. My feeling is that is too high (possibly a rumour spread in the hope of being exempt from BEE). It does make sense to increase it from a very small R300 000/annum to R500 000 or R1 000 000 per annum. We will eagerly await this change because it could make BEE much easier for the smaller companies.

Although being exempt from BEE has its advantages it is possibly worse to advertise the fact that you are a very very small business!

BEE is going to be scrapped
I can’t say where I heard this (maybe from the odd anti BEE). BEE will not disappear, it is here for at least the next 10 years. We should take advantage of all the good business opportunities that are available.

Will we keep you updated?

Yes we will send out a newsletter (you can subscribe to it) and make posts to our website on a regular basis to keep all readers up to date with the latest BEE news.

Gavin Levenstein

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