The South African National Roads Agency limited has signed and agreement with construction machinery supplier, Bell Equipment that will accelerate the transformation of the construction industry and open doors for black-owned and managed CIDB graded contractors.

The Memorandum of Understanding will give CIDB graded contractors access to earthmoving machinery which will enable them to participate more meaningfully in major construction projects.

“Our primary objectives are to grow the construction and engineering sectors and attract new entrants, especially black contractors who can build businesses and create jobs,” says Skhumbuzo Macozoma, the Chief Executive Officer of SANRAL.

Overcoming hurdles

Access to various types of construction equipment used in construction has been identified as one of the biggest hurdles facing black-owned and managed CIDB graded construction companies. They often do not have the capital to purchase major machinery used for construction works, earth-moving and the grading of roads.

The cooperation between SANRAL and Bell Equipment will help to promote fair competition in the construction and engineering sectors. Black-owned CIDB graded contractors will now get access to finance, leasing and rental options, training and maintenance services.

CIDB graded contractors will now be able to purchase, rent or lease road construction equipment that will enable them to participate in major public sector construction where high standards of quality are required.

Facilitating growth

Bell will also leverage its existing partnerships with the financial sector to give black-owned and managed CIDB graded contractors access to financing.

Macozoma says the cooperation with Bell Equipment is a “trailblazing step for the South African construction industry.” It demonstrates SANRAL’s resolve to use its contracting and procurement processes to facilitate the growth of emerging contractors.

Both Bell and SANRAL confirmed that they will host an information sharing session with black-owned and small businesses in construction to unpack how their collaboration will benefit them.