South Africa: PICC - Taking The Next Step

The South African government has stated that it plans to inject about R845 billion into public infrastructure projects over the next three years, with a further R4 trillion over the following 15 years. In light of this policy, the Draft Infrastructure Development Bill was introduced to complement and continue the work done by President Zuma's Presidential Infrastructure Coordinating Commission (PICC).

It plans to enhance the coordination of the country's Planned Strategic Infrastructure Projects (SIPs) which have been compiled by the PICC, and to govern their implementation. The bill is aimed at:

  • Fast-tracking strategic infrastructure delivery by extending state powers for the expropriation of land and shortening the approval time for projects by government authorities;
  • Boosting infrastructure development by promoting public private partnerships;
  • Providing for the continued existence of the PICC, which must perform the functions provided for in the bill, including the identification and development of infrastructure priorities and the designation of SIPs; and
  • The development of a Steering Committee comprising all stakeholders in the implementation of each project.

The bill was introduced by the Department of Economic Development (headed by Minister Ebrahim Patel) in February 2012. The PICC currently monitors 44% of all state infrastructure projects, with a focus on 18 of the SIPs already put forward. R24 billion has already been spent to date, and 145 000 jobs have been created.


"The Presidential Infrastructure Coordinating Commission will address the pace of infrastructure development in South Africa and develop a 20-year infrastructure pipeline of projects to ensure that South Africa could plan ahead and move away from the â€Üstop-start syndrome' around the building of inf r a st r u c tu r e , " Kgalema Motlanthe said.

The PICC was established by cabinet and comprises a Management Committee, a Secretariat and a Steering Committee for SIPs. The members designated to the PICC are:

  • The president;
  • The deputy-president;
  • Ministers designated by the president;
  • Premiers of the provinces; and
  • The chairperson of the South African Local Government Association, recognised in terms of the Organised Local Government Act 52 of 1997 as the national organisation representing municipalities.

The PICC has been mandated, among others things, to ensure systematic selection, planning and monitoring of large projects, and develop a 20-year infrastructure pipeline. In order to achieve the goals set out above, certain functions have been given to the PICC.

The most important of these are to:

  • Determine and develop infrastructure priorities, more specifically five-year priorities;
  • Designate SIPs;
  • Identify strategic international partners with which to conclude agreements, and in turn scale up investment in infrastructure;
  • Consider proposals for infrastructure development and maintenance;
  • Call for proposals for the implementation of strategic integrated projects;
  • Address capacity constraints, and improve coordination and integration within strategic integrated projects; and
  • Promote the creation of decent employment opportunities, skills development, and support African development and integration. The PICC performs a vital role in the implementation of the bill and what it hopes to achieve. Therefore, the test of the PICC's effectiveness will be how well it can coordinate and integrate its work and the different elements of the Infrastructure Plan, and whether the government's infrastructure development plans are realised.

The committees that form the PICC are fundamental in enabling it to achieve its goals.

Management Committee

The Management Committee is appointed by the president, and consists of members of the PICC, cabinet, the executive council of a province or a municipal council, or such deputy-ministers as are determined in consultation with relevant premiers. This committee is currently chaired by Gugile Nkwinti, Minister for Land Development and Rural Reform.

It exercises an oversight role within the PICC in the management of its affairs, and some of its duties include:

  • Ensuring that the decisions of the PICC are carried out;
  • Monitoring and evaluating infrastructure development in South Africa generally, and the SIPs specifically; and
  • Reviewing and making recommendations to the PICC, to ensure the harmonisation and improvement of policies and laws relating to infrastructure development and investment in infrastructure.

Perhaps its most important role is to ensure the coordination of regulatory approvals. This role is aimed at ensuring that there is high-level cooperation and coordinated political will across all three spheres of government to push through infrastructure development projects. This role will be especially important in ensuring that the tight timeframes imposed on regulatory decision-making are met.

Where these deadlines are not met, the commission can intervene and expedite the process. In this regard, Minister Patel has stated that "...[t]he commission is a single forum that binds all three spheres. So we now have a committee that includes everyone who has anything to do with infrastructure. It is a mechanism that can bind everyone to a decision."


The Secretariat, which is headed by Minister Patel, is responsible for the day-to-day work of the PICC. The members are appointed by the president, and consist of the minister, as chairperson, and other ministers and deputy-ministers as the president may determine.

Included in the Secretariat's function are the appointment and oversight of, and interaction with, the Steering Committees, and the coordination of the implementation of SIPs. This body must also report regularly to the Management Committee and the PICC regarding its management duties.

Steering Committees

Steering Committee members are nominated by the minister under whose portfolio the SIP falls, and include the director-general in the relevant minister's department, and representatives of the departments and organs of state affected by the project.

Members of a Steering Committee must have the relevant knowledge and delegated power to take decisions on behalf of the organ of state which they represent. A channel of communication with the head of the represented organ of state must also be available to the members, thus further speeding up implementation.

Provisions to combat possible corruption are included in the bill, and there is a clear intention to maintain procedural fairness and administrative justice standards, notwithstanding the streamlined approach to project planning, approval and implementation.

Previously published by Legal Times, Friday May 10 | 2013

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

To print this article, all you need is to be registered on

Click to Login as an existing user or Register so you can print this article.

Similar Articles
Relevancy Powered by MondaqAI
Some comments from our readers…
“The articles are extremely timely and highly applicable”
“I often find critical information not available elsewhere”
“As in-house counsel, Mondaq’s service is of great value”

Related Topics
Similar Articles
Relevancy Powered by MondaqAI
Related Articles
Up-coming Events Search
Font Size:
Mondaq on Twitter
Mondaq Free Registration
Gain access to Mondaq global archive of over 375,000 articles covering 200 countries with a personalised News Alert and automatic login on this device.
Mondaq News Alert (some suggested topics and region)
Select Topics
Registration (please scroll down to set your data preferences)

Mondaq Ltd requires you to register and provide information that personally identifies you, including your content preferences, for three primary purposes (full details of Mondaq’s use of your personal data can be found in our Privacy and Cookies Notice):

  • To allow you to personalize the Mondaq websites you are visiting to show content ("Content") relevant to your interests.
  • To enable features such as password reminder, news alerts, email a colleague, and linking from Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to your website.
  • To produce demographic feedback for our content providers ("Contributors") who contribute Content for free for your use.

Mondaq hopes that our registered users will support us in maintaining our free to view business model by consenting to our use of your personal data as described below.

Mondaq has a "free to view" business model. Our services are paid for by Contributors in exchange for Mondaq providing them with access to information about who accesses their content. Once personal data is transferred to our Contributors they become a data controller of this personal data. They use it to measure the response that their articles are receiving, as a form of market research. They may also use it to provide Mondaq users with information about their products and services.

Details of each Contributor to which your personal data will be transferred is clearly stated within the Content that you access. For full details of how this Contributor will use your personal data, you should review the Contributor’s own Privacy Notice.

Please indicate your preference below:

Yes, I am happy to support Mondaq in maintaining its free to view business model by agreeing to allow Mondaq to share my personal data with Contributors whose Content I access
No, I do not want Mondaq to share my personal data with Contributors

Also please let us know whether you are happy to receive communications promoting products and services offered by Mondaq:

Yes, I am happy to received promotional communications from Mondaq
No, please do not send me promotional communications from Mondaq
Terms & Conditions (the Website) is owned and managed by Mondaq Ltd (Mondaq). Mondaq grants you a non-exclusive, revocable licence to access the Website and associated services, such as the Mondaq News Alerts (Services), subject to and in consideration of your compliance with the following terms and conditions of use (Terms). Your use of the Website and/or Services constitutes your agreement to the Terms. Mondaq may terminate your use of the Website and Services if you are in breach of these Terms or if Mondaq decides to terminate the licence granted hereunder for any reason whatsoever.

Use of

To Use you must be: eighteen (18) years old or over; legally capable of entering into binding contracts; and not in any way prohibited by the applicable law to enter into these Terms in the jurisdiction which you are currently located.

You may use the Website as an unregistered user, however, you are required to register as a user if you wish to read the full text of the Content or to receive the Services.

You may not modify, publish, transmit, transfer or sell, reproduce, create derivative works from, distribute, perform, link, display, or in any way exploit any of the Content, in whole or in part, except as expressly permitted in these Terms or with the prior written consent of Mondaq. You may not use electronic or other means to extract details or information from the Content. Nor shall you extract information about users or Contributors in order to offer them any services or products.

In your use of the Website and/or Services you shall: comply with all applicable laws, regulations, directives and legislations which apply to your Use of the Website and/or Services in whatever country you are physically located including without limitation any and all consumer law, export control laws and regulations; provide to us true, correct and accurate information and promptly inform us in the event that any information that you have provided to us changes or becomes inaccurate; notify Mondaq immediately of any circumstances where you have reason to believe that any Intellectual Property Rights or any other rights of any third party may have been infringed; co-operate with reasonable security or other checks or requests for information made by Mondaq from time to time; and at all times be fully liable for the breach of any of these Terms by a third party using your login details to access the Website and/or Services

however, you shall not: do anything likely to impair, interfere with or damage or cause harm or distress to any persons, or the network; do anything that will infringe any Intellectual Property Rights or other rights of Mondaq or any third party; or use the Website, Services and/or Content otherwise than in accordance with these Terms; use any trade marks or service marks of Mondaq or the Contributors, or do anything which may be seen to take unfair advantage of the reputation and goodwill of Mondaq or the Contributors, or the Website, Services and/or Content.

Mondaq reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to take any action that it deems necessary and appropriate in the event it considers that there is a breach or threatened breach of the Terms.

Mondaq’s Rights and Obligations

Unless otherwise expressly set out to the contrary, nothing in these Terms shall serve to transfer from Mondaq to you, any Intellectual Property Rights owned by and/or licensed to Mondaq and all rights, title and interest in and to such Intellectual Property Rights will remain exclusively with Mondaq and/or its licensors.

Mondaq shall use its reasonable endeavours to make the Website and Services available to you at all times, but we cannot guarantee an uninterrupted and fault free service.

Mondaq reserves the right to make changes to the services and/or the Website or part thereof, from time to time, and we may add, remove, modify and/or vary any elements of features and functionalities of the Website or the services.

Mondaq also reserves the right from time to time to monitor your Use of the Website and/or services.


The Content is general information only. It is not intended to constitute legal advice or seek to be the complete and comprehensive statement of the law, nor is it intended to address your specific requirements or provide advice on which reliance should be placed. Mondaq and/or its Contributors and other suppliers make no representations about the suitability of the information contained in the Content for any purpose. All Content provided "as is" without warranty of any kind. Mondaq and/or its Contributors and other suppliers hereby exclude and disclaim all representations, warranties or guarantees with regard to the Content, including all implied warranties and conditions of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, title and non-infringement. To the maximum extent permitted by law, Mondaq expressly excludes all representations, warranties, obligations, and liabilities arising out of or in connection with all Content. In no event shall Mondaq and/or its respective suppliers be liable for any special, indirect or consequential damages or any damages whatsoever resulting from loss of use, data or profits, whether in an action of contract, negligence or other tortious action, arising out of or in connection with the use of the Content or performance of Mondaq’s Services.


Mondaq may alter or amend these Terms by amending them on the Website. By continuing to Use the Services and/or the Website after such amendment, you will be deemed to have accepted any amendment to these Terms.

These Terms shall be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of England and Wales and you irrevocably submit to the exclusive jurisdiction of the courts of England and Wales to settle any dispute which may arise out of or in connection with these Terms. If you live outside the United Kingdom, English law shall apply only to the extent that English law shall not deprive you of any legal protection accorded in accordance with the law of the place where you are habitually resident ("Local Law"). In the event English law deprives you of any legal protection which is accorded to you under Local Law, then these terms shall be governed by Local Law and any dispute or claim arising out of or in connection with these Terms shall be subject to the non-exclusive jurisdiction of the courts where you are habitually resident.

You may print and keep a copy of these Terms, which form the entire agreement between you and Mondaq and supersede any other communications or advertising in respect of the Service and/or the Website.

No delay in exercising or non-exercise by you and/or Mondaq of any of its rights under or in connection with these Terms shall operate as a waiver or release of each of your or Mondaq’s right. Rather, any such waiver or release must be specifically granted in writing signed by the party granting it.

If any part of these Terms is held unenforceable, that part shall be enforced to the maximum extent permissible so as to give effect to the intent of the parties, and the Terms shall continue in full force and effect.

Mondaq shall not incur any liability to you on account of any loss or damage resulting from any delay or failure to perform all or any part of these Terms if such delay or failure is caused, in whole or in part, by events, occurrences, or causes beyond the control of Mondaq. Such events, occurrences or causes will include, without limitation, acts of God, strikes, lockouts, server and network failure, riots, acts of war, earthquakes, fire and explosions.

By clicking Register you state you have read and agree to our Terms and Conditions