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SARB Amendment Bill Tabled

August 21, 2018

Parliament

The South African Reserve Bank Amendment Bill has been tabled in parliament.

The proposed legislation, a private member’s bill drawn up by the Economic Freedom Fighter’s Julius Malema, was published for comment at the end of May 2018.

It seeks to establish the state as the sole shareholder of the Reserve Bank’s shares.

The bill also aims to:

• amend the South African Reserve Bank Act, 1989, so as to delete certain definitions;
• insert a definition;
• provide for the appointment of certain Board directors by the Minister;
• provide for the tenure of office of appointed directors;
• deal with the filling of casual vacancies for appointed directors;
• repeal certain sections;
• give the Minister the power to appoint auditors of the Bank;
• give the Minister the power to make regulations relating to the appointment of appointed directors; and
• provide for matters connected therewith.

The bill will now be processed by the standing committee on finance.

Meanwhile, the committee was recently briefed by the World Bank on South Africa’s Systematic Country Diagnostic entitled “An Incomplete Transition: Overcoming the Legacy of Exclusion in South Africa”.

Binding constraints highlighted included insufficient skills, weak property rights, low competition in global and regional value chains and climate shocks.

A number of policy options were mentioned including expanding affordable university access, strengthening tenure security and capacity for land reform, attracting foreign direct investment and carbon pricing.

In conclusion, the World Bank declared that South Africa’s transition remains incomplete due to a continuing legacy of exclusion which makes it difficult to build a social contract.

In a separate matter, national treasury has published a statement confirming that president Ramaphosa has agreed to appoint a Commission of Inquiry into the alleged improprieties at the Public Investment Corporation.

“The commission’s terms of reference will include a review of the PIC’s governance and operating model, possible changes to the PIC’s founding legislation and its Memorandum of Incorporation and investment decision-making framework.”

Further detail will be provided in due course.