A. ISSUES IN THE ENVIRONMENT
1. Economic growth
Cabinet welcomes the 2.2% growth in the South African economy during the third quarter, which is helping move the country out of a technical recession. The growth figures were driven by increases in the agricultural sector (6.5%), financial sector (2.3%); manufacturing sector (7.5%) and wholesale and retail trade sales (3.2%). The growth figures signal a rebound in the economy and together with initiatives from the Jobs Summit and South African Investment Conference, will continue to improve.
Cabinet also joins South Africans in welcoming this month’s drop in the fuel price which comes as a relief, especially as we move into a holiday period. All sectors of society are urged to build on the positive momentum during the third quarter to help place the South African economy on a new growth trajectory.
2. National Minimum Wage (NMW)
Cabinet also welcomes the signing of the NMW Bill into law by President Cyril Ramaphosa. The Bill sets a historic precedent in the protection of low-earning workers and reduction of inequality in society. The first NMW will raise the earnings of an estimated six million South African low-earning workers. There will be a phase-in period for farm workers, forestry workers and domestic workers.
Whilst this NMW will not end income inequality, Cabinet believes it will go a long way to breaking the back of rising inequality and persistent poverty.
3. Toyota Wessels Institute for Manufacturing Studies (TWIMS)
Cabinet welcomes the launch of the newly established R56-million TWIMS. The institute will boost South Africa’s manufacturing sector, develop world-class capabilities and drive African industrialisation. It will also accelerate the building of a manufacturing culture that the country needs to drive its domestic demands and create more jobs.
It is an independent and not-for-profit initiative established through grant funding from the Toyota South Africa Education Trust. It has been established in partnership with the University of Pretoria’s Gordon Institute of Business Science to deliver a Master of Business Administration degree specialising in manufacturing.
4. Social Economy
Cabinet notes the successful Symposium on the Social Economy held by government in partnership with the International Labour Organisation (ILO) and the Government of Flanders on Friday, 30 November 2018. The symposium was led by the Economic Development Department and supported by the Department of Small Business Development.
The Social Economy comprises enterprises and initiatives directed at achieving social-policy objectives such as creating jobs, mainstreaming excluded groups, and bringing goods and services to rural communities. It has the potential of supporting economic inclusion and creating thousands of additional jobs. The symposium brought together social entrepreneurs, policymakers, researchers and non-governmental organisations, and will help in the development of a Green Paper on the Social Economy during 2019.
5. Voter registration
In preparation for the 2019 elections, Cabinet calls on South Africans to exercise their right as responsible citizens by ensuring they have a green bar-coded ID book, smart ID card or temporary identity certificate and are registered to vote in their districts. The Independent Electoral Commission will hold a voter-registration weekend on 26 and 27 January 2019 and South Africans are encouraged to use the opportunity to register to vote or verify their registration status.
Cabinet appeals to those who have applied for Smart IDs to collect their documents at their respective Department of Home Affairs (DHA) branches.
6. National Director of Public Prosecutions (NDPP)
Cabinet applauds President Ramaphosa’s appointment of Advocate Shamila Batohi as the new NDPP. This follows the President’s consideration of five nominees shortlisted by an advisory panel. The appointment brings stability to the leadership of the National Prosecuting Authority and emboldens the country’s fight against crime and corruption. Cabinet extends its appreciation to Energy Minister Jeff Radebe and the panel for their contribution to this historic process of appointment.
7. Limpopo health professionals
Cabinet strongly condemns attacks on doctors in hospitals around Limpopo. Health professionals and health facilities serve and protect communities and the vulnerable. Attacking those who are meant to save lives is a criminal offence and will not be tolerated. The Minister of Health, Dr Aaron Motsoaledi, is leading a multidisciplinary task team – comprising police intelligence agents, detective services, public order policing, private security authorities and DHA officials – to review the security systems at public healthcare facilities.
Cabinet calls on the community to work with law-enforcement agencies to ensure that perpetrators of this heinous crimes are arrested and convicted.
8. Safer holidays
Cabinet appeals to all South Africans to keep safe during the December holidays. Road users are urged to adhere to the traffic rules, and not to drive recklessly and negligently, especially under the influence. Pedestrians are also urged to remain cautious on the road. The Justice, Crime Prevention and Security (JCPS) Cluster has intensified anti-crime and safety operations countrywide. The DHA’s has increased its capacity in ports of entry to ensure it is able to respond to the expected increase of travellers over the festive period. It also plans to extend operating hours at busy ports of entry, covering pre-festive season movements, the festive season period and the re-opening of schools.
9. Fifth anniversary of the passing of Madiba
Cabinet joins South Africans in commemorating the fifth anniversary of the passing of our first democratically elected President Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela, who passed on 5 December 2013. President Ramaphosa declared 2018 as the Year marking Mandela’s centenary. His legacy has been celebrated throughout the year by South Africans in their various formations, the most recent being the Global Citizens Mandela 100 Festival held over the past weekend. Cabinet calls on all to stay true to Madiba’s ideals, including his unwavering commitment to justice, equality and non-racialism.
10. Global Citizen Festival Mandela 100
Cabinet thanks all participants of the Global Citizen Festival Mandela 100 held in Johannesburg on Sunday, 2 December 2018. The festival formed part of the national commemorative events to celebrate the centenary of Tata Nelson Mandela and was transmitted in over 180 countries. It brought together thousands of global citizens, activists, world leaders, musicians and influencers to advance the Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations (UN) in honour of Mandela’s memory.
Cabinet extends its sympathy to all those who were violated by criminal elements that preyed on them whilst leaving the stadium. It strongly condemns these criminal acts and calls on law-enforcement agencies to bring offenders to book.
11. World AIDS Day
South Africa marked World AIDS Day on 1 December under the theme: “Cheka Impilo. Know Your Status.” Cabinet appreciates government’s multidimensional HIV and AIDS programme that has taken decisive steps to bring an end to the epidemic. The programme has realised an additional uptake of two million people to the antiretroviral treatment programme.
South Africa has more than 4,2 million people on treatment, making it one of the world’s biggest treatment programmes. The HIV and AIDS campaign continues to make inroads towards changing behaviour, medical treatment and social de-stigmatisation. Cabinet is steadfast in its call on South Africans to get tested so they can know their HIV status, which will help them make informed decisions on preventative measures, treatment, care and support.
12. UN International Day of Persons with Disabilities
South Africa joined the global community in observing the annual UN International Day of Persons with Disabilities on Monday, 3 December.
Government remains committed to the inclusion and protection of persons with disabilities through dedicated programmes and interventions to ensure access to equal opportunities, as enshrined in the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa of 1996.
B. CABINET DECISIONS
13. Nkomazi Special Economic Zone (SEZ)
Cabinet ratified a decision of the Minister of Trade and Industry, Dr Rob Davies, to designate the SEZ and to grant a SEZ Licence to the Mpumalanga Provincial Government’s Department of Economic Development and Tourism.
The Nkomazi SEZ will be positioned as an “Agro-Processing Hub” using green energy. It will be supported by mixed services such as warehousing and logistics. This forms part of is the Maputo Development Corridor project, which is a major trade corridor which connects Gauteng, Limpopo and Mpumalanga with Maputo in Mozambique. It comprises, among other things, roads, ports and railways.
It will contribute towards accelerating growth, attract foreign and domestic direct investment, expand the manufacturing sector and create employment in the region.
14. Cabinet has approved the signing of the rollover Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) with the United Kingdom (UK) once the last outstanding technical issues are resolved and the internal administrative issues are finalised. Cabinet also approved the submission in Parliament for ratification, the Agreement establishing the EPA between Southern African Customs Union and Mozambique and the UK
15. Cabinet approved the publication of the streamlined White Paper on Home Affairs for public comment. The White Paper argues that for South Africa to fully realise the potential of the Fourth Industrial Revolution, the DHA must play a critical enabling role in citizen empowerment, inclusive development, efficient government and national security.
It is also based on the DHA having sole mandate for the management of official identity and status, international migration, and asylum seekers and refugees. The White Paper proposes measures to reduce the fraudulent bank transactions and realise savings due to increased inefficiencies.
16. Cabinet approved the submission of the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO) Copyright Treaty (WCT) of 1996 to Parliament for accession.
This is a multilateral agreement and a special agreement under the Berne Convention that deals with the protection of the work and rights of their authors in the digital environment. Acceding to the WCT also benefits the South African creative industry, specifically authors of literary and artistic works. The WCT is in the best interest of South Africa as it ensures that the country’s copyright law will keep pace with technological change. This will afford important protection against piracy for rights holders in the areas of computer programmes and databases.
17. Cabinet approved the submission of the WIPO Performances and Phonograms Treaty of 1996, to Parliament for accession.
This is a multilateral agreement which deals with the rights of performers and producers of phonograms, specifically in the digital environment. This treaty will protect people or organisations that add substantial creative, technical or organisational skill in the process of bringing work to the public and enhance revenue to benefit them.
18. Cabinet approved the submission of the Beijing Treaty to Parliament for accession. This is a multilateral agreement, which regulates copyright for audio-visual performances and expands the audio-visual performers’ rights. It recognises audio-visual performers’ intellectual property right in their audio-visual work and creates economic benefit for them. It also provides audio-visual performers with moral rights in respect of their work and recognises audio-visual performers’ rights in the digital environment.
19. Cabinet approved for the establishment of an Inter-Ministerial Committee (IMC) to lead the African Peer Review Mechanism (APRM) second generation periodic review. It will be conducted after the 2019 General Elections. The IMC will be supported by the approved establishment of the APRM National Governing Council. This APRM review process provides member states a space for national dialogue on governance and socio-economic indicators and an opportunity to build consensus on the way forward.
20. Cabinet approved for South Africa to sign the Convention to establish, under international law, an intergovernmental organisation called the Square Kilometre Array (SKA) Observatory, which will be responsible for the construction and operational phases of the global SKA radio telescope project, to be located in South Africa and Australia.
The signing of the convention will be crucial in providing the global partnership with the appropriate governance mechanisms, which will ensure successful delivery of the project. South Africa will also be able to leverage foreign inward investment, as well as skills and infrastructure development benefits associated with the SKA project.
21. Cabinet approved the One-Stop Border Post (OSBP) National Framework for implementation. This provides guidance towards the speedy establishment of OSBPs between South Africa and its neighboring countries. The OSBP will enhance trade facilitation without compromising national security or revenue collection through the efficient movement of goods, persons and services between South Africa and the adjoining states of Botswana, Lesotho, Namibia, Mozambique and Zimbabwe.
It will also result in the region realising a faster border clearance and limited duplication of border agency interventions, which in turn improves trade competitiveness and movement of person by cutting down on cost and time.
22. Cabinet approved that the National Treasury and Financial Intelligence Centre (FIC) will coordinate South Africa’s preparation for the national risk assessment and upcoming mutual evaluation process which commences in mid-April 2019.
The mutual evaluation is a peer-review process conducted by international experts from other member countries of the intergovernmental body, the Financial Action Task Force, to assess the effectiveness of the anti-money laundering (AML) and combating of terrorist financing (CFT) system in South Africa. The outcomes of the process will assist in strengthening the integrity of the South African financial system by identifying steps to be taken to address any weaknesses in our AML/CFT system.
23. Cabinet approved the recommendations presented to the Department of Basic Education by the Department of Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation. The recommendations flow from the Impact evaluation of the Early Grade Reading Study after two years of interventions. . The DBE initiated the Early Grade Reading Study in collaboration with various universities. This is a large-scale educational impact evaluation which aims to build evidence about what works to improve the teaching and learning of early grade reading in African languages in the country. The Report will be posted on the DPME website.
24. Cabinet approved the Policy Framework on National Museums. The aim is to transform the management and operations of museums in terms of access, redress, equity, nation-building and social cohesion. The policy proposes the clustering of museums into new management structures to achieve economies of scale by reducing the number of councils.
It also provides for the grading of all the museums according to qualities, scope and significance to enable equitable funding allocations.
25. Cabinet approved the National Guide for the Appointment of Persons to Boards and Chief Executive Officers (CEOs) of State-owned and State-controlled Institutions. The guide provides national principles and good-practice guidelines to promote uniformity in the appointment of persons. It responds to the Presidential Review Committee on State-owned Entities to promote transparency, accountability and good governance practices in all organs of state.
26. Cabinet approved the 6th progress report by the Inter-Ministerial Task Team on North West. Cabinet is pleased that visible progress has been made in stabilising the provincial departments in North West and the provision of basic services has been prioritised. The intervention has cleared over 90% of the accruals to suppliers enabling the improved supply of medicine and equipment. Four of the five operating theatres at Mafikeng hospital have been returned to functionality. A number of the funded vacant posts in the respective departments have been filled. A process to address the backlog infrastructure maintenance has been put in place and the law enforcement agencies continue to make progress in bringing those who were involved in corruption to account.
Working with the North West leadership the appointed Administrators continue to make progress in setting in place good governance processes. The NCOP visited the North West in October and have tabled their report endorsing the National government intervention in the Province
27. Cabinet approved the hosting of the following events:
The Fourth Annual Meetings of the New Development Bank (NDB), during the first quarter of 2019. The NDB was established by the Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa (BRICS) bloc to mobilise resources to support infrastructure and sustainable development projects in BRICS countries, and other emerging markets and developing countries.
The 17th Ordinary Session of the African Ministerial Conference on the Environment (AMCEN) in June/July 2019. AMCEN is a permanent forum where African Ministers of the Environment deliberate and decide on environmental issues of relevance to the Continent. South Africa assumes its chairship from 2019 to 2021.
28. Cabinet approved publication of the Revised Expropriation Bill for public comment. The revised bill adds a section that provides explicit circumstances under which land expropriation in the public interest may be without compensation. The section strengthen the earlier Expropriation Bill that was withdrawn from the parliament process. The Bill will assist in accelerating the land reform programme whilst within the framework of the constitutional principles.
29. Cabinet approved for the publication of the Conduct of Financial Institutions Bill of 2018 for public comment. This forms part of government’s reform of the financial sector regulation towards a Twin Peaks model and follows the enactment of the Financial Sector Regulation Act, 2017 (Act 9 of 2017) which, amongst others, aims to ensure better market conduct and the treatment of customers in the financial sector. Market conduct regulation aims to prevent and manage when prevention is not successful, the poor outcomes that arise from financial institutions conducting their business in ways that are unfair to customers or undermines the integrity of financial markets and confidence in the financial system.
The Bill will strengthen customer protection by putting in place a single comprehensive market conduct law. This will result in the consistent application of customer-protection principles across the financial sector. It provides for a single, activity-based approach to licensing all financial institutions, and ensuring full regulatory coverage and supervision.
This will allow the newly established Financial Sector Conduct Authority to better meet its mandate of protecting financial customers by ensuring fair treatment. The Bill, which will apply to all financial institutions, also supports transformation of the financial sector through implementation of the Financial Sector Code issued under the Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment Act, 2003 (Act 53 of 2003) by requiring that policies be introduced to comply with the code and also supervising implementation of those policies.
30. Cabinet approved for the introduction of the Financial Matters Amendment Bill of 2018 in Parliament.
The amendments relate to the:
a) Insolvency Act of 1963, to strengthen the regulation of over-the-counter derivative market, in line with G20 commitments;
b) Military Pensions Act of 1976, to address discriminatory provisions;
c) Banks Act of 1990, to allow for qualifying state-owned companies to apply for banking licences;
d) Government Employment Pension Law of 1996, to change the clean break principle in the case of divorce, ensuring that members’ pension pay outs to former spouses on divorce are not converted to a debt obligation; and
e) Auditing Profession Act of 2005, to address challenges and limitations that the Independent Regulatory Board for Auditors faces in discharging its regulatory and oversight responsibilities.
31. NMW announcement
President Ramaphosa will announce the NMW at an event to be held at Kliptown in Soweto on Friday, 7 December 2018. The NMW will immediately benefit more than six million workers and help address the level of inequality and poverty in South Africa. This landmark proclamation will extend our social net to the most vulnerable people.
32. International Anti-Corruption Day
In commemoration of the UN’s International Anti-Corruption Day on Sunday,
9 December 2018, Cabinet reaffirms the country’s fight against corruption in both the private and public sectors. The JCPS Cluster has prioritised the fight against this scourge in line with government’s zero-tolerance stance towards corruption.
Corruption is a societal problem that must be fought by everyone as it hinders socio-economic development and increases poverty by diverting resources away from where they are most needed.
33. International Human Rights Day
South Africa will join the international community in observing International Human Rights Day on Monday, 10 December 2018. The day marks the anniversary of the UN General Assembly's adoption of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in 1948. Government continues to ensure that all South Africans enjoy all human rights such as the rights to life, equality and human dignity. Every citizen has a responsibility to ensure that human rights and dignity in our nation is protected.
34. Global Commission on the Future of Work
The report from the Global Commission on the Future of Work will be launched on 22 January 2019. It was established by the ILO in 2017 to assess the rapid transformation taking place in the global economy and world of work, and identify the key challenges and recommendations. This High-Level Global Commission is co-chaired by President Ramaphosa together with Prime Minister Stefan Löfven of the Kingdom of Sweden.
Cabinet joins President Ramaphosa in expressing sadness at the passing of Struggle stalwart and former High Commissioner to the United Kingdom, Mr Mendi Msimang, on Monday, 3 December 2018, following a long illness. Cabinet extends condolences to the family, friends, comrades and associates of Mr Msimang. Mr Msimang has been accorded a Special Official Funeral category 1 which entails elements of military ceremonial honour in line with the policy on State and Provincial official funerals.
41.1 Cabinet congratulates Banyana on reaching the final of the 2018 Africa Women’s Cup of Nations. By doing so they have automatically qualified for next year’s FIFA Women’s World Cup in France.
41.2 Cabinet commends Dr Lindiwe Sidali, who made history by becoming the first African female cardiothoracic surgeon in the country.
All appointments are subject to the verification of qualifications and the relevant clearance.
37. Independent Development Corporation
Mr Tshokolo Nchocho as CEO on a five year contract.
38. South African Weather Service Board members:
Ms Nana Magomola (Chairperson);
Dr Phillip David Dexter (Deputy Chairperson);
Mr David Lefutso;
Adv Derek Jeffrey Block;
Ms Sowbakiam Mudly-Padayachie;
Dr Mphekgo Patrick Maila;
Ms Feziwe Yolanda Renqe;
Mr Itani Phaduli;
Dr Owen Peter Muller Horwood;
Ms Kelebogile Shirley Moroka-Mosia;
Mr Jerry Lengoasa (CEO); and
Dr Tsakani Ngomane (Departmental DG representative)
39. Adv Sandile Nogxina as Non-Executive Director and Chairperson of the Airports Company South Africa Board.
40. South African Statistics Council:
Mr Ian Assam – reappointed;
Mr Faldie Esau – reappointed;
Dr Jacky Galpin – reappointed;
Mr Ettienne le Roux – reappointed;
Dr Ariane Neethling – reappointed;
Dr Thabi Leoka;
Ms Reshoketswe Mokobane;
Mr Thapelo Molahloe;
Ms Blanche Motsosi;
Ms Nompumelelo Nzimande;
Mr Wandile Sihlobo;
Ms Vuyelwa Mantyi (Eastern Cape representative);
Ms Zeenat Ishmail (Western Cape representative);
Mr Kuberin Packirisamy (Northern Cape representative);
Mr Thulani Bhengu (KwaZulu-Natal representative);
Mr Thuso Ramaema (Free State representative);
Dr David Everatt (Chairperson and Gauteng representative);
Prof Andries Monyeki (North West representative);
Dr Nomuso Mlondo (Mpumalanga representative); and
Dr Modjadji Malahlela (Limpopo representative).
41. Defence Force Service Commission:
Dr Siphelele Zulu;
Dr Ziyaad Essop;
Adv Nokuzola Gloria Khumalo; and
Mr Ian Hugh Robertson.
42. South African Nuclear Energy Corporation Board
a. Dr Robert Adam;
b. Dr Ramatsemela Masango;
c. Mr Aadil Patel;
d. Mr Bishen Singh;
e. Ms Pulane Kingston;
f. Ms Mathlodi Ngwenya;
g. Mr Jabulani Ndlovu; and
h. Ms Pulane Molokwane;
43. Board of Mhlathuze Water
a. Ms Thabi Agatha Shange (Chairperson)
b. Mr Silas Zwalakhe Hlophe (Deputy Chairperson)
c. Dr Purshottamma Sivanarain Reddy
d. Mrs Nica M Gevers
e. Dr Mosidi Makgae
f. Mr Musa Moses Xulu
g. Mr Bonginkosi Vincent Mshengu
h. Mrs Amita Badul
i. Ms Nothando Nonkululeko Mkhize
j. Ms Gloria Dumisile Biyela
k. Mr Petros Mzothule Zikalala
44. CEOs for Sector Education and Training Authorities (SETAs):
a. Bank SETA – Mr Trevor Rammitlwa;
b. Food and Beverages SETA – Ms Nokuthula Selamolela;
c. Fibre Processing and Manufacturing SETA – Ms Felleng Yende;
d. Insurance SETA – Ms Nadia Starr;
e. Services SETA – Ms Amanda Buzo-Gqoboka;
f. Agriculture SETA – Mr Zenzele Gilbert Myeza;
g. Chemical Industries Education and Training Authority – Mr Mike Khathutshelo Ramukumba;
h. Culture, Arts, Tourism, Hospitality and Sports SETA – Ms Keitumetse Lebaka;
i. Education, Training and Development Practices SETA – Ms Nombulelo Nxesi;
j. Finance and Accounting SETA – Ms Ayanda Pearl Zinhle Mafuleka;
k. Health and Welfare SETA – Ms Elaine Brass;
l. Public Services SETA – Ms Bontle Portia Lerumo; and
m. Wholesale and Retail SETA – Mr Blessing Tom Mkhwanazi.
Issued by Government Communication and Information System (GCIS)