Photo: Duane Daws

Photo: Duane Daws

In an effort to accelerate transport planning in South Africa, Minister of Transport Dipuo Peters officially launched the National Transport Forum (NTF) and Transport Sector Broad-Based Black Economic-Empowerment (BBBEE) Charter Council in Johannesburg on Thursday.

“The key objective of the forum is to enable the development of a transport system that seeks out better integration and investment, supports a strong economy and meets our transport infrastructure objectives. The forum should, therefore, set out the future of our transport network as well as the balance between a competitive economy and social inclusion. It should also give us the opportunity to deliver a pro-national growth agenda for transport in the short, medium to long term,” said Peters.

The NTF would comprise skilled and experienced members from local and international public and private sectors.

The forum would allow for the sharing of best practices and deliver on the vision contained in the National Development Plan, as well as facilitate investment through a funding framework that would fast-track the expansion of the country’s transport network.

Deputy Transport Minister Sindisiwe Chikunga said at the launch that by 2030 South Africans should be able to enjoy an integratedtransport system, a transformed transport sector, world-classinfrastructure and increased connectivity.

The permanent members of the forum would represent all cities, key national and provincial departments, transport agencies and transportstakeholders, acting as a catalyst for policy creation and a platform for engagement around policy matters, motivating legislative changes.

BBBEE Charter Council
Peters also launched the BBBEE Charter Council on Thursday to promote the entry of black people into the transport sector.

The charter council would be mandated to advise government on BEE in the transport sector, compile reports on the status of BEE in the sector; provide advice and support to complete the alignment of the integrated transportsector BBBEE with the Department of Trade and Industry’s codes of good practice on BEE.

The charter council would also have to provide guidance on sector-specific matters affecting BBBEE in entities in the sector and report to the Presidential BBBEE advisory council on the progress made by the sector on issues of transformation and empowerment.

“The Department of Transport is finalising a transport sector BEE audit. The audit would provide a clear picture on participation in the sector by black entrepreneurs. Subsequently the council’s advice on the matter will be critical.

“The NTF and the charter council have a significant role to play in guiding the government on the priorities for majortransport projects and the areas of equity that require our urgent attention. Such an integrated and inclusive approach should remove existing traditional administrative and structural boundaries,” said Peters.

She assured that the newly established structures would facilitate the delivery of integrated and efficient transportservices and would ensure that there was integrated local, provincial and national planning.