Annual Forum Papers

Privatisation and Restructuring of State Assets in South Africa: Lessons from African Privatisation Experiences

  • Year: 2003
  • Author(s): Afeikhena Jerome; Moses Rangata
  • Countries and Regions: South Africa

This study evaluates South African privatisation or restructuring programme. In the main, it has largely focused on divestiture of "non- core business" such as broadcasting stations, resorts, and related services in the transport sector as well as selling minority stakes in utilities to so-called strategic equity partners and Black Economic Empowerment groups. The programme has been very slow and it has generated so much opprobrium from labour. It got under way with no clearly defined 'frames' or 'waves'. Various government departments were involved depending on the industry concerned. On the basis of African privatisation experience, it suggests a reform of the institutional framework. Specifically, it recommends a return to the National Framework Agreement by constituting a Privatisation or Restructuring Agency which is all embracing. Ultimately, the burden of growth and development must be equitably shared by the triad- government, business and labour.