KEY FINANCIAL SECTOR AGREEMENTS AND DEVELOPMENTS

Agreement

Update on implementation as at 17 September 2004

Update on implementation as at 20 May 2005

1. Retirement fund reform (National pension and provident funds).

Constituencies agreed that there was a need to support capacity building of employee representatives on Boards of Trustees in order to enhance decision making with regard to the proposed extension of investment instruments

  • Work on the policy document will be concluded before end of 2004
  • Legislative drafting will begin, on the back of consultations with social partners
  • The Minister of Finance held a round table where NEDLACL parties were invited to consider the draft Retirement Funds Reform Framework
  • The draft Retirement Funds Reform Framework was tabled at NEDLAC, for further engagement.
  • The NEDLAC Task Team has begun a series of meetings in 2005 - the first meeting was held on 15 March 2005.
  • Nedlac has convened a special task group to negotiate the restructuring of the Institute of Retirement Funds (IRF) so that it reflects the views of Trustees
    1. 5% of investable funds - investigate appropriate instruments.

The key objective of the Financial Sector Summit process was to ensure that over and above the existing role of the financial sector as a whole does more to support economic and social development.

  • Nedlac parties in the Public Finance Chamber have embarked on a definitional agreement process, in order to establish a measure for monitoring progress in this area.
  • Final agreement to be reached within September
  • The two-person task team has completed definitions and recommendations, which were integrated into the Financial Sector Charter Council's initiatives.
  • The definition and recommendations were agreed to by all constituencies

2. Pension funds trustees conference.

Constituencies agreed that NEDLAC should host a conference of the trustees of pensions and provident funds before the end of 2004, so as to discuss the various challenges facing the funds, device training and capacity building for trustees and develop guidelines on corporate governance, fiduciary responsibility, investment sustainability and social responsibility.

 

  • The Chamber has already started engaging on this matter.
  • The agenda for the conference has been finalised. Themes have been developed, which are regulation, governance, access, benefits and investment.
  • The date for the conference has not yet been finalised , but should be before end of 2004

 

  • The Retirement Funds Trustees Conference was held on 29-30 September 2005 and was attended by more than 400 delegates.
  • Issue raised at the Conference are being considered in the retirement funds reform processes
  • Nedlac is also on the process of convening a follow-up trustees conference in October 2005 to review the implementation of the 2004 resolutions and assess the following:
  • Retirement Funds Reform process
  • Trustee Training
  • Code of Conduct for Trustees and service providers
  • Investment

3. Regulatory framework for credit bureaux.

Parties agreed that credit bureaux should improve the flow of information, supporting more equitable and efficient financial markets.

 

  • Framework is being worked, as part of the Credit Law review, led by DTI.
  • Discussions have been held with the Chamber, over the past two months.

The National Credit Bill will be tabled at NEDLAC, the Task Team responsible for the issue is having its first meeting during the last week of May 2005

 

4. Legislation for co-op financial National

  • National Treasury in process of finalising draft legislation for public consultation during 2004.
  • The second draft Bill is with the National Treasury.

National Treasury has plans to table this at NEDLAC before the end of 2005

5. Ensure co-operation to end redlining a set principles In terms of discrimination against people with HIV Parties agreed that codes of practice on discrimination should also prevent unfair discrimination against people with HIV and AIDS

 

  • Significant steps have been made to put together agreement between the Banking Association and the LOA in this matter. A report is expected soon the Chamber.
  • Business has committed to providing a code that deals with this issue, in particular redlining. It was also agreed that this will be dealt from a principle point of view.
  • Banks are offering products to cater for HIV positive clients. Such products have been put to the Nedlac Financial Summit Task Team.
  • Issue of Redlining is being addressed in engagement between Banking Association and Department of Housing on implementation of MOU.

 

6 Research the economics of basic financial services and on that basis establish mechanisms and timeframes for achieving universal access. To engage effectively in the economy, encourage savings and improve the quality of life, every South African resident should have access to affordable and convenient payments and savings facilities.

 

  • This matter is being dealt with, within the context the Charter.
  • The Chamber will put together a discussion on the various proposals that have been made by constituencies, in particular business.
  • Mzansi Bank Account was launched on 25 October 2004
  • Mzansi is First product. Other products being looked at bot under Mzansi brand and separately, including money transfer.The Mzansi Bank Account was launched on 25 October 2004
  • As at 15 May 2005 the Mzansi account has 1067268 account holders and the breakdown is as follows:
  • ABSA Bank: 27.5%
  • FNB: 15.4%
  • Nedbank:7.1%
  • Standard bank: 21.9%

7. Proposals to enhance savings following the Summit. Parties agreed that South Africa requires increased investment in production capacity at all levels in order to bring about the necessary levels of growth and employment.

 

 

  • A savings workshop was held to consider appropriate policies and other options.
  • Government launched the retail bond in 2004
  • As part of the Retirement Fund Act Reform process, discussions are underway on the National Savings Fund
  • Government prepared a document and tabled it to the Public Finance and Monetary Policy Chamber on savings the purpose of which was to get views of other parties on how best to encourage household savings.

The matter is standing on the Chamber's Agenda

8. Financial sector Charter

  • Charter was signed in August 2003
  • Implementation is ongoing
  • Parties agreed on the Constitution of the Charter Council and members thereof in September 2004.