Printing SA has updated its members with the Employment Equity Amendment Bill, Two Sides global anti-greenwash campaign, a tariff increase on thermal paper rolls and more.

Employment Equity Ammendment Bill – updated 26 January 2021

A Bill is not law, but proposed legislation, so at present it is not enforceable. The description of the Bill: to amend the Employment Equity Act 55 of 1998 (‘the EEA’). The current legislation requires companies to comply with employment equity targets, however, the new targets will be much more specific.

What is the purpose of the Employment Equity Amendment Bill?

– The Bill aims to introduce more detailed affirmative action targets for companies.
– Targets will be introduced for specific occupational levels, sub-sectors of industries and different regions.
– Companies that want to do business with the government can only do so after being certified as being in compliance with their obligations by achieving the set targets.
– Employers with less than 50 employees will no longer have to report on their employment equity targets, irrespective of their turnover.
– The empowerment of labour inspectors to secure a written undertaking from a ‘designated employer’ regarding the preparation of employment equity plans.

Effective date of implementation for the Act/Regulation/Bill/

– The Bill is at the National Assembly under consideration. Once public participation and comments have been considered, it will be referred to the relevant committee, debated and amended if necessary.
– Once the Bill passes through the National Assembly, it will go to the President to be signed into law.

What are the penalties if companies do not comply?

– Under current legislation, companies can be fined between the greater of R1.5 million or 2% of turnover if a first-time offender, up to the greater of R2.7 million or 10% of turnover for multiple contraventions of employment equity laws.
– The new amendment proposes that a company could face a fine if it fails to set an employment equity plan without numerical goals.

What do I need to do to comply? If the Bill becomes law in its current form:

– Employers will be required to check that their employment equity plans comply with the sectoral targets for designated groups.
– Produce a certificate from the minister that confirms compliance with affirmative action targets.

Printing SA will keep members updated with the progress of the Bill so when it becomes law, they can comply.

Deadline for comment if sent to Printing SA

Submission must be received by no later than Friday, 12 February 2021 at 16:00, comments can be directed to

Published date for the notice:

Published on 20 July 2020 in Government Gazette No. 43535. The call for comments opened on 25 January 2021.

How suppliers are ready for a new world, and what printers can learn from them

Industry suppliers are bracing themselves for the future after Covid-19. Sonja Angerer shares four important key business strategies that printers can incorporate into their businesses that will allow them to thrive during and after Covid-19. As Covid-19 remains prevalent, it is evident that there is now a different ‘new normal’ that suppliers are already bracing themselves for.

People have not looked forward to spring and summer as much as they have in 2021, as all over the northern hemisphere people are eager for Covid-19 cases to finally drop. While in summer 2020, almost everybody was certain that the worst was already behind them, society and the economy are now starting to accept the hard truth that the virus may still linger in some shape or form for years to come. Suppliers, with their international distribution, a bigger workforce, and long planning circles, may be a little ahead of the game.

Four key steps should be taken into account for printers to protect the future of their businesses:

– Do not be afraid to adapt your management.
– Aim to sell direct, do not rely on platforms and partners only.
– Create a steady source of income.
– Explore new lines of business.

Click here to read the full article.

Two-Sides global anti-wash campaign: 710 companies removed misleading anti-paper statements

Since 2010, the Two Sides campaign has successfully influenced the change or removal of misleading environmental claims by more than 700 organisations, including many of the world’s largest corporations.

With huge pressures on economies, banks, telecom providers, utility companies and even governmental organisations are increasingly focused on switching their customers from paper to digital services to cut costs. All too often their customer communications attempt to mask these cost-saving efforts, justifying the switch with unfounded environmental marketing appeals such as ‘Go Green – Go Paperless’ and ‘Choose e-billing and help save a tree’.

‘Not only are these greenwash claims in breach of established environmental marketing rules, but they are hugely damaging to an industry that has a solid and continually improving environmental record,’ said Two Sides Country Manager Deon Joubert. ’Far from ‘saving trees,’ a healthy market for forest products such as paper encourages the long-term growth of forests through sustainable forest management. Many of the organisations we engage are always surprised to learn that managed forests have actually been growing rather than declining.’

Globally in 2020, Two Sides engaged 320 organisations making misleading statements about paper. So far, 134 of them have removed such statements from their communications and Two Sides continues to engage the remaining organisations. The organisations were throughout South Africa, Europe, North and South America, Australia and New Zealand. This brings the total to 710 companies that have removed misleading greenwashing statements since the campaign began in 2010. Read the complete release.

Tariff increase on thermal paper rolls

The International Trade Administration Commission (ITAC) has put forth a proposal that will see an increase in the rate of customs duty applied to thermal paper rolls, which are classified under the tariff heading 4810.13.20. This proposed increase applies to products that fall under the following ITAC definition: ‘Paper and paperboard of a kind used for writing, printing or other graphic purposes, not containing fibres obtained by a mechanical or chemi-mechanical process of which not more than 10% by mass of the total fibre content consist of such fibres: In rolls: of width not exceeding 105mm (Thermal Paper Rolls) classifiable under Tariff sub-heading 4810.13.20.’

In response to this increase, Printing SA has sent a response to ITAC, highlighting their thoughts regarding the increase, and impact on the industry. Printing SA has not received any solid feedback as yet from ITAC, but the organisation has been assured that their concerns are receiving attention from senior investigators within ITAC. Printing SA will keep members up to date with these developments as they unfold. Contact Printing SA for more information.

Wits Business Management Programme (BMP) and Management Development Programme (MDP) course

Printing SA, in partnership with WITS University, is proud to introduce the BMP and MDP Course. This course introduces new managers to concepts and business skills that will prepare them to take on responsibilities that effectively contribute towards growth and development within their organisation. This course is designed for new managerial employees, or those aspiring to become managers. Visit the Printing SA website if you would like to find out more and to register your learners.

Introduction to the printing and packaging programme

The Printing SA Introduction To The Printing and Packaging Industry Programme includes a series of brand-new occupational videos and has been developed in-line with the knowledge subject specifications as per the assessment criteria of the new printing and packaging qualifications that are in development, and approved by the Quality Council for Trades and Occupations (QCTO). Find out more about this course and register by visiting the Printing SA website.