Namibia drops 25% black economic empowerment clause

13 Apr 2018

Ujuh Reporter

Namibia has dropped the proposal to impose a requirement that businesses operating in the country must allocate 25% ownership towards its natives who were excluded from economic participation during the colonial era.

The proposal had come as part of the bill titled New Equitable Economic Empowerment Framework (NEEEF) which is almost an emulation of South Africa’s Black Economic Empowerment (BEE) policy.

Announcing the scrapping of the ownership clause Namibia’s President, Hage Geingob, said “The 25% equity stake will not translate into broad-based empowerment and is done away with.

“Most Namibians especially the previously disadvantaged do not have enough resources to invest in empowerment transactions, nor are they able to obtain access to funding to participate in such transactions.”

NEEEF has been carved with an objective of providing  an “overarching policy framework into which all other policies will slot.” It is designed to “supersede all other transformation and empowerment policies of Government as well as provide the framework within which all private sector initiatives, past and future will be expected to conform to.”

NEEEF objectives include:

  • Ensuring the sharing of Namibian resources in an equitable and sustainable basis by the people of Namibia
  • Creating a socially just society
  • Implementation of measurable policies of redress and redistribution
  • Creating vehicles for empowerment
  • Removing barriers of socio-economic advancement in order to enable previously disadvantaged persons to access productive assets and opportunities of empowerment
  • Actively guarding against the repugnant tendencies of window-dressing, favoritism, nepotism and self-enrichment
  • Providing measurement of empowerment targets
  • Ensuring that an empowering act is meant to launch individuals to empower themselves in the future using the basis of their initial empowerment.
  • Economic empowerment may be organized in the following forms of ownership: public, private, joint public-private, cooperative, co-ownership, and small-scale family owned
  • Equitable empowerment is addressing disparities occasioned by class, gender and generational relationships.

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