SANRAL’s new strategic vision seeks to create an equal and transformed South Africa.
Changing South Africa into an equitable society is at the heart of the National Development Plan, as well as the South African National Roads Agency (SOC) Limited’s (SANRAL) new strategic vision, Horizon 2030, and its accompanying transformation drive.
The aim of the new strategic vision is to transform the construction industry by growing small businesses, with the emphasis on black- and women-owned SMMEs.
The objective is to ensure a competitive, contestable market with a substantial and sustainable number of black participants, with no barriers to market entry and thus a healthy level of competition that results in competitive pricing.
SANRAL is unwavering in its commitment to ensure the inclusive participation of black South Africans in the opportunities generated by the agency’s annual financial investment in the construction sector and related industries.
It encourages joint ventures between big companies and SMMEs, with the emphasis on local small businesses. It seeks to create more opportunities for black businesses in the supply chain, more participation by women and youth, job upskilling, basic training and assistance for SMMEs.
Horizon 2030 also elevates stakeholders into a core business pillar, as the agency recognises the need for ongoing dialogue and engagement to address concerns and establish buy-in for the road ahead.
It is for this reason that SANRAL went to all nine provinces to invite stakeholders to engage with the draft Transformation Policy and provide input, to shape the final document to be tabled at Cabinet level.
Starting out with four transformation engagements in October 2017 in Gauteng, more than 30 sessions were held that allowed SANRAL to listen to the concerns of all stakeholders, to take them on board and address them.
Some of the recurring themes include uncertainty about how serious the agency is about making its new vision a reality, insistence that local labour and businesses should get priority and a desire that engagements should not just be a once-off but should be continuous.
To this end, SANRAL is confident its policy will be approved and implemented during the 2018/19 financial year.
Already the agency has set up several project liaison committees (PLCs) that will play a pivotal role in ensuring the participation of locals on projects.
More will be set up, comprising representatives from SANRAL, the consultants, contractors, traditional leadership and other relevant stakeholders.
As part of its ongoing stakeholder communications, SANRAL will continue to convene dialogues, roundtable discussions and information sessions, not only to address supply chain opportunities for SMMEs, but to promote its bursary, scholarship and internship programmes.
Overall, the feedback from the engagements has been positive and communities welcome the opportunity to be informed of the roads agency’s operations and the opportunities these create for the local economies.