Department of Trade, Industry and Competition
The Draft Companies Amendment Bill is to be published for comment on 1 October 2021.
In a briefing earlier this week on the draft bill, the trade, industry and competition minister, Ebrahim Patel, pointed out that the proposed amendments “seek to update the Companies Act in light of developments in the field, address public concerns and improve the ease of doing business”.
The minister also highlighted that the draft bill focuses on remuneration policies and proposes a “transparency-driven approach, with clearer shareholder powers than what is currently the case”.
In a statement, the department indicated that the draft amendments “set out to improve accountability and scrutiny on remuneration practices, promote shareholder activism and corporate governance”.
They also relieve companies of onerous, impractical and burdensome provisions contained in companies legislation and give South Africa instruments to undertake its role in the global offensive against illicit cross-border behaviour.
An earlier version of the draft bill was published for comment in 2018.
According to the department, the 2021 version is a redrafted bill with significant amendments.
The draft bill seeks to achieve three policy objectives, namely, improving ease of doing business; providing for greater transparency on wage ratios and addressing true or beneficial ownership of companies so as to address money laundering challenges.