South Africa warns oil firms to increase black ownership

South_Africa_oil_firms_warned_re_black_ownership_-_Dipuo_PetersMinister of energy Dipuo Peters (second from the left) warns that oil firms that fail to adhere will lose their operating licence. (Image source: IAEA imagebank)A number of oil firms risk losing their licence to operate in South Africa after a government audit revealed their failure to adhere to state-mandated black ownership regulations

In line with the Black Economic Empowerment (BEE) framework, the Petroleum and Liquid Fuels Charter of 2000 committed all oil companies working in the country to reach a minimum of 25 per cent black ownership by 2010.

A Ministry of Energy audit, however, has revealed that black shareholding in oil firms was a combined average of 18.9 per cent.

South Africa minister of energy Dipuo Peters said in a statement, “The findings of the audit are extremely disappointing, particularly given the time since the signing of the charter.”

Oil firms working in South Africa include Shell, BP, Chevron, and South Africa’s state-owned PetroSA. Total was, however, the only firm in the country to achieve the charter regulations.

Peters plans to work with oil companies to secure new target deadlines, but warned that those that continue to defy the charter should be prepared to lose their operating permit or have their activities restricted.

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