Status of the Values of South African Business with regards to Black Economic Empowerment and Foreign Policy

NATIONAL ASSEMBLY

FOR ORAL REPLY

QUESTION NO: 164

PUBLISHED IN INTERNAL QUESTION PAPER NO 26 OF 29 AUGUST 2006

MR DJ SITHOLE (ANC) TO ASK THE MINISTER OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS:

(1) Whether South African business carry the new values that South Africans seek to create for themselves when considering investment options, such as the black economic empowerment (BEE); if not, what is the position in this regard; if so, what are the relevant details;

(2) whether South African business carry the values of our foreign policy in their conduct in other countries; if not, why not; if so, what are the relevant details? N1328E

REPLY:

The issue of South African business involvement in other countries especially in the continent is complex. Overall South African business has supported the country's effort of all round intergration of our country in the global community of nations. Furthermore, given the priority focus our foreign policy attaches to Africa, South African business is playing a positive role in promoting economic development in the continent. As members know, South Africa is currently in the top 3 sources of Foreign Direct Investment in the continent. There has been, in the main positive acknowledgement and appreciation of this contribution by South Africa and in the main this has been carried out in a manner expressive of our national policies and values.

However, it should be said that there are disturbing instances where we tend to treat African countries purely as markets with no effort at developing national economies; where we act in a manner that seems to export practices forbidden in our national legislations;

The Departments of Foreign Affairs and Trade and Industry are following this. We continue to raise areas of concern with business in our interactions. So far we hope that persuasion and sharing of best practice will lead to the strengthening of the positive element of our business engagements in foreign lands.





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