South Africa's National Roads Agency signs MOU to develop small contractors
The South African National Roads Agency SOC Limited (SANRAL) has signed an MOU with the South African Forum of Civil Engineering Contractors (SAFCEC), to prioritise the development of SMMEs in the road construction industry.
“In order to achieve meaningful transformation in this sector, we have to look beyond just meeting targets. To this end, our MOU with SAFCEC is geared to explore options and solutions that enables mentorship, development, capacity building and training of small contractors, giving them the skills and knowledge needed to execute road construction and maintenance projects,” explained Ismail Essa, SANRAL’s Transformation Head.
According to the MOU, SAFCEC seeks to improve knowledge and skills of small contractors, deliver on its transformation, incubation and empowerment commitments to its members, create value and forge relationships with small contractors in the construction sector.
SANRAL on the other hand is committed to the mentorship of small contractors to increase the number of participants, particularly Black-owned, across the value and supply chains of the road construction sub-sector of the construction industry. Furthermore, the roads agency seeks to promote fair competition, facilitate access to developmental opportunities and build lasting relationships that sees small contractors benefiting from direct development support.
Essa further explained that the training will be funded through SAFCES’s sector education and training authority (SETA) funds, while SANRAL will provide work sites where interns can be placed after training, to complete the required practical experience.
SAFCEC will provide mentors to guide, develop and prepare small contractors to be able to tender on SANRAL projects, covering technical competence, finance, human resources, contractual matters and legislation.
Successfully completing this programme, will mean that the small contractor understands how to position their entity to attain a competitive edge, is able to submit best scoring, yet profitable tenders, can determine and assess risk and has improved strategic, technical and entrepreneurial skills.
“Now, more than ever, we have to get this right. As SANRAL responds to the President’s call for infrastructure development to drive our country’s economic recovery post COVID-19, it is imperative that we widen the net of economic inclusion in the road construction industry. The success of our economic recovery initiatives will depend on capacitating as many contributors as possible to meaningfully participate in building this country’s infrastructure. We are ready and excited about playing our part. Together we will build South Africa, through better roads,” concluded Essa.
Photos: Road Construction in Hermanus, South Africa (africaknows.com)