By KWANELE DHLADHLA | 2021-02-23
Partially due to the devastating effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Eswatini Construction Industry Council has resolved to freeze all registration, administration fees and renewal fees. This was disclosed by Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Nhlanhla Dlamini who mentioned that there had been a serious reduction in the number of effective businesses operations within the construction industry at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic. He mentioned that they would have not hiked the registration and renewal fees to exorbitant levels, but would have matched inflation which currently averages at 4.5 per cent. However, given the nature of very slow activity in the construction space, the increment was halted. intention “The ultimate intention of not increasing all registration and renewal fees is to ensure that the cost of doing business remains affordable against all odds despite the tough trading conditions emanating from the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Dlamini. It should be mentioned that varying fees apply to the tender value ranges for each eligible category per construction firm. Construction firms registering for the first time pay a registration fee together with a subscription fee, including administration fees. Registered construction firms pay an annual subscription fee, including the administration fees. The minimum registration fee that gets paid by general building works contractors for tenders less than E0.5 million is E800, while the maximum is E11 500 (see tables for detailed fees). In terms of Construction industry Council of 2013 section 27 (10), Dlamini also announced that stakeholders were notified that renewal was now open for the 2021/2022 financial year. It was stated that renewal would commence on Monday March 1, 2021 to Friday May 31, 2021. It was clarified that the renewal period has no bearing on the validity of the CIC certificates which still expire on March 31, 2021. “Late renewal (renewal after May 31, 2021) of certificates will attract a penalty of 10 per cent of the annual renewal,” said Dlamini. For renewal, Dlamini said all contractors were expected to have registered and paid levy for all their ongoing and completed projects according to section 6 (3) of the CIC Levy Regulations of 2016. renewal Furthermore, contractors that have not remitted the project levy to the council will not be issued with certificate for renewal per the CIC Levy Regulations. It has been recently reported that significant players in Eswatini’s construction industry saw projects stall due to a cement shortage. Dlamini disclosed that this even prompted CIC to convene a meeting with the association of builders, manufacturers and suppliers to deliberate on the issue. "We are aware of the cement shortage which has been caused by shortage of supplies due to COVID-19 which led to the lockdown," previously said Dlamini. In the short term, the council advised both companies and individuals that require cement in large volumes to place orders early to avoid delays. As a long-term strategy, they were expected to continue to engage with the government and all strategic stakeholders with a view to attract an investment that could satisfy the local market and also export to other countries in the southern African region. established CIC Eswatini was established through the construction industry council of 2013 primarily to regulate and promote the construction industry in meeting national construction demands while providing strategic leadership to industry stakeholders for the stimulation of sustainable growth, reform and improvement in the country’s construction sector and regulation of the industry. The vision of the council is, “to be the most competitive construction industry regulator in the region”. The mission of the council is, “to regulate, develop and promote the construction industry for the bene?t of all stakeholders through transformation for sustainable growth, monitoring industry performance, research and empowerment, therefore improving the socio-economic status of the country”.
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