Private partnerships needed to help struggling SOEs: Gordhan

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Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan says there is a serious need for government to start seeking private partnerships to help cash-strapped State-Owned Entities (SOEs).

He says this will help in boosting some of the SOEs that are struggling with poor financial performance.

He was speaking during a briefing to the portfolio committee on Public Enterprises Committee about Transnet’s annual report and financial statements.

“Some of the constraints that these SOEs fail arise from the state capture issue. And given the level of debt that we have in some of these SOEs, it’s important to leverage private sector participation and where necessary private sector equity participation, so that the state does not lose control of key institutions, projects and programmes in government,” says Gordhan.

Meanwhile, Transnet says its problems do not stem from a shortage of clientele.

Briefing the Portfolio Committee on Public Enterprise on the entity’s finances, board chairperson Andile Sangqu says financial challenges facing the company can be fixed easily if the requirements of customers can be addressed effectively.

“The company does not have a demand problem. You know many businesses would spend a lot of money trying to get customers, paying money on marketing and business development, so that you can get clients so that you can service and then be able to then generate money.”

“Transnet does not have that demand. Clients are there. What is missing is our ability to meet the expectations and requirements of the clients. It’s a fixable problem,” adds Sangqu.

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