South African National Parks (SanParks) spends millions of rands each year on procuring goods and services from small businesses to help maintain the 20 national parks across the country under its curatorship.
SanParks’ general manager of infrastructure and special projects Antoinette van Wyk says the conservation authority makes use of small businesses for projects under the government’s Expanded Public Works Programme (EPWP).
The EPWP aims to create work opportunities for local communities and small businesses surrounding the parks through the implementation of alien vegetation clearing projects, wetland rehabilitation, waste management and the establishment of community tourism projects. All 20 national parks benefit from the EPWP.
Under the programme, SanParks has nine different projects. These include the removal of alien invasive plants, removal of bush encroachment, erosion control, rehabilitation of wetlands, cleaning and rehabilitation of the coast, infrastructure development and rehabilitation of redundant infrastructure and fire prevention and control services.
Van Wyk says SanParks’ procurement spend on small businesses under the EPWP for the 2012/2013 financial year amounted to R135 million, 55% of the approved budget for the programme.
In order to be considered for projects under the programme, businesses have to, among other things, own a vehicle to transport a team of workers, possess at least a Grade 12 qualification and have had previous experience in similar work.
Procurement opportunities available under the programme at the various parks are advertised in local community centres, local municipalities, local newspapers and at the respective parks.
“The target market is small businesses local to the area,” says Van Wyk.
SanParks also provides training for those small businesses involved in the programme in areas such as business management, finance and health and safety requirements. It also assists businesses to develop as independent contractors and ensures that they comply with legal requirements such as workmen’s compensation and unemployment insurance (UIF).
Businesses that do not fall under the labour-intensive EPWP, such as caterers and transport companies, can also apply to become a SanParks service provider and are encouraged to register on the SanParks supplier database.
The main requirements for inclusion on the supplier database:
- An original and valid tax clearance certificate issued by the South African Revenue Service and certified copies of company registration documents.
- A certified copy of a valid Black Economic Empowerment certificate.Confirmation of banking details issued by the bank or a cancelled cheque.
- A company profile.
Preference will be given to registered suppliers, but this does not necessarily mean that suppliers who are not yet registered will be completely excluded.
- Go to wwww.sanparks.org to access supplier database registration forms