Oceana has always had a proactive and focused transformation strategy, aimed at accelerating B-BBEE initiatives in all seven elements of the B-BBEE scorecard. This is reflected in the results of its annual independent B-BBEE audit, conducted by economic empowerment rating agency, Empowerdex. Oceana has been rated independently as a black-owned and controlled company with commendable empowerment credentials.
Within an industry that is highly regulated and where access to marine resources is governed through a competitive application process, it is critical to ensure that the group's operations comply with government expectations, whether they relate to compliance with regulation or policy criteria. A continuing focal point in securing fishing rights for the group remains the assessment of transformation and whether a broad-based approach in line with the B-BBEE Codes or a narrow approach focused only on black ownership should be applied in the fishing sector.
Oceana believes that the B-BBEE Act and Codes were promulgated to provide certainty to the country and the economy regarding the measure to be applied for broad-based transformation. Oceana believes that the private sector has an obligation to help government achieve its objective of economic growth and job creation through complying with the B-BBEE Act and Codes. By adopting this approach, the benefits of doing business flow to communities, the skills levels of employees are improved, and new black-owned enterprises can be developed and supported by means of enterprise development and preferential procurement.
During the year under review the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) decided that the 6-to-10-year measurement targets included in the B-BBEE Codes, would apply to all companies with a year-end after 9 February 2012. This increased the employment equity and preferential procurement targets for 2012 against which performance should be measured. Oceana had anticipated that the new targets would only become effective during its 2013 financial year. Nonetheless, it is pleasing to report that Oceana has achieved an improved score of 93.98 (compared to 93.96 in 2011), has maintained its level 2 B-BBEE status, and has retained a recognition rating of 125% for procurement in terms of the DTI B-BBEE Scorecard. Increased scores were achieved in skills development and preferential procurement compared to 2011, the employment equity score declined slightly due to the increased targets, while scores in all other elements were maintained.Oceana Group Certificate 2012