How much your business could be fined for not following SA’s BEE laws

Last year, Mildred Oliphant, indicated that she would be looking at actively enforcing and increasing the punishments for non BEE-compliant companies.

According to the 2017 Employment Equity report, which was based on 26 255 employment equity reports from companies across South Africa, 68% of management positions are still held by white employees, while African employees occupy only 14.4% of managerial posts in South Africa.

The report also found that white South Africans occupy 72% of the positions in the private sector, while black South Africans occupy 73.2% in the public sector at senior management level.


The Employment Equity Act already contains substantial penalties for non-compliance with the EEA. The EEA contains the statutory obligation for employers to implement affirmative action measures and also provides protection against unfair discrimination.

These penalties can be anywhere between R1.5 million and up to 10% of an employer’s annual turnover, depending on the nature and frequency of the non-compliance.

Salt explained that Section 42 of the Act empowers the Director-General  to assess employers’ substantive compliance with their Employment Equity obligations, as opposed to their procedural compliance (submitting the EE report on time, appointing an employment equity manager and similar formal requirements).