7 October 2004
Finance Minister Trevor Manuel has announced the establishment of a 21-member council that will review and monitor the implementation of the black economic empowerment (BEE) goals set out in the financial services charter.
The council, made up of representatives of various organisations in the financial sector, was formed in September following behind-the-scenes horse-trading.
The Financial Services Charter Council will consist of 21 representatives, six from industry associations, three from the Association of Black Securities and Investment Professionals, and four each from the government, community associations, and labour.
Two of the four government representatives in the council will be drawn from the National Treasury, while the Department of Trade and Industry and the Presidency will each have one representative.
The announcement follows a meeting between the government and representatives from the different constituencies to resolve the council’s composition.
The council is the first of its kind to be established since the government launched its BEE strategy, which encourages different economic sectors to voluntarily draw up their own charters to measure BEE targets.
The financial services charter was launched in October last year, and the sector has since been grappling with the establishment of an independent body to oversee the charter’s implementation.
Manuel said the council would meet four times a year, with its first session scheduled for 11 October.
Manuel noted that though the council’s composition would not please everybody, its formation was “an achievement”. The formation of the council was in the best interest of the country, he said, and the process needed to be nurtured.
Derek Muller of the Banking Council said the model was not ideal considering the large number of people involved in the industry. He added, however: “I don’t think you can experience an ideal model … I think all of us collectively agree this is a workable model, though there are concerns.”
Kenny Bungane, representing the Association of Black Securities and Investment Professionals, said the council was a starting point and would provide much-needed energy “to test ourselves on how the sector is transforming”.