SANAS and the DTI have issued a joint statement announcing that BEE Verification agencies would now be accredited to issue EME certificates from 1 March 2012.The reason for this sudden change is that the recently revised PPPFA regulations make it a requirement of government departments when awarding tenders to ensure that if a BEE certificate was issued by an accredited agency it must have a SANAS logo on the certificate.
Accredited agencies have never been accredited to issue EME certificates which has now caused considerable confusion in the market place and will drive the cost of credible verification up substantially.
Section 10.(1) of the Preferential Procurement regulations states:
10. (1) Tenderers with annual total revenue of R5 million or less qualify as Exempted Micro Enterprises (EMEs) in terms of the Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment Act, and must submit a certificate issued by a registered auditor, accounting officer (as contemplated in section 60(4) of the Close Corporation Act, 1984 (Act No. 69 of 1984)) or an accredited verification agency.
However when the Treasury issued their practice notes in December last year they reiterated that their requirements were to only accept agencies certificates if they were accredited by SANAS. This despite the fact that SANAS has never accredited BEE verification agencies to issue EME Certificates.
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Section 4.7 of the practice notes discusses requirements for BEE certificates issued by SANAS accredited agencies which includes EME certificates:
4.7.1 Verification agencies accredited by SANAS
184.108.40.206 These certificates are identifiable by a SANAS logo and a unique BVA number.
220.127.116.11 Confirmation of the validity of a B-BBEE Status Level Verification Certificate can be done by tracing the name of the issuing Verification Agency to the list of all SANAS accredited agencies. The relevant BVA may be contacted to confirm whether such a certificate was issued.
18.104.22.168 As a minimum requirement, all valid B-BBEE Status Level Verification Certificates should have the following information detailed on the face of the
? The name and physical location of the measured entity;
? The registration number and, where applicable, the VAT number of the measured entity;
? The date of issue and date of expiry;
? The certificate number for identification and reference;
? The scorecard that was used (for example EME, QSE or Generic);
? The name and / or logo of the Verification Agency;
? The SANAS logo;
? The certificate must be signed by the authorized person from the verification Agency; and
? The B-BBEE Status Level of Contribution obtained by the measured entity.
The implications for business and verification agencies;
? Cost of EME Verification will soar. One requirement of an accredited agency is to conduct a site visit. The site visit will be essential to ensure the company does not have a second similar trade name, appears to be a small business based on business premises size and even that they are not merely a continuation of an existing business.