The Agricultural Produce Agents Amendment Bill has been tabled in parliament.
The bill’s explanatory summary was published in Government Gazette 43723 in September 2020.
The bill aims to amend the Agricultural Produce Agents Act, 1992, so as to:
• refine certain definitions;
• provide for certain provisions of the Agricultural Produce Agents Act, 1992, to apply to all categories of agents;
• clarify the appointment and responsibilities of the registrar;
• provide for financial statements of the council to be audited by the Auditor General;
• provide for insurance of the fidelity fund;
• further clarify the conditions for acting as an agent;
• provide for trust accounts for export agents;
• provide for insurance by export and fresh produce agents; and
• provide for matters connected therewith.
According to the bill’s memorandum, the objectives of the Agricultural Produce Agents Council (APAC) are to regulate the occupations of fresh produce, export and livestock agents and to maintain and enhance the status and dignity of the occupations and the integrity of persons practicing them.
The functions of the APAC include the formulation of policy and the setting up of rules and codes of conduct.
The portfolio committee on agriculture, land reform and rural development will process the bill.