9 March 2017

South Africa: Over R30 Million to Transform Home Building Industry

Pretoria — The National Home Builders Registration Council (NHBRC) will be spending more than R30 million in the new financial year in its efforts to bring about transformation in the home building industry.

The announcement was made during the launch of the NHBRC Transformation Charter held at Cedarwood, Johannesburg, on Wednesday.

The NHBRC Transformation Charter seeks to address pertinent issues that relate to the advancement of equal economic opportunities in the human settlements value chain in order to optimise the meaningful participation of priority and vulnerable groups including women, youth, people with disabilities and military veterans.

The launch was hosted in partnership with the Department of Human Settlements, as part of the International Women's Day celebrations.

Speaking at the launch, NHBRC Acting Chairperson of Council, Julieka Bayat, said the NHBRC believes that the transformation charter will assist council in unlocking obstacles to and the effective participation by the identified groupings.

"It further asserts measureable goals for us to achieve on the road to a radically transformed home building industry. We also wish to demonstrate our support towards government's efforts of promoting social and economic transformation," said Bayat.

Bayat added that one of the biggest challenges in achieving an effective transformation programme in the industry is the lack of adequate skills.

She said that the council will be investing most of the money in upskilling the most vulnerable groups, including women, youth, people with disabilities and military veterans.

"Women are particularly under-represented with respect to ownership, control and the management of companies involved in the housing value chain as well as in terms of technical skills.

"Also, the high unemployment rate, especially of our youth has heightened the need for us to aggressively pursue transformation of the sector so as to create self-employment opportunities," said Bayat.

Human Settlements Deputy Minister Zou Kota-Fredericks, who attended the launch, said transformation and economic empowerment must be driven aggressively in the home building environment.

"It is critical to note that the radical economic transformation programme is not a stand-alone programme as it has no special budget and should be an integral part of each and every department and all entities of government. It calls on all of us to revisit the Preferential Procurement Act so as to respond adequately to this issue," said Deputy Minister Kota-Fredericks.

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