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Skills Development Amended Act in South Africa

Skills Development Amended Act in South Africa


  • Signed in: ACT NO. 97 – 20 October 1998 [Date of commencement of s. 1: 2 February, 1999]
  • Skills Development Amendment Act 31 of 2003 [with effect from 14 November 2003]
  • Skills Development Amendment Act 37 of 2008 [with effect from 6 April 2009]
  • Skills Development Amendment Published 3 December 2012 – Came into effect 1 April 2013
    • BUSA (Business Unity South Africa) won Labour Court’s judgment on Friday 21st of August 2015 declared both regulations to be invalid‚ and it set them aside with effect from March 31 2016.
    • The Court declared Regulations 3(11) and 4(4) of the 2012 Grant Regulations to be invalid, and it set them aside. However, it suspended the effect of that order until 31 March 2016.
    • The Minister of DHET appealed against this that was not pursued, and on 15 April 2016 it has lapsed with an effective of 1 April 2016. (Cancelling the previous amendment of 2012)

In line with the overall government objectives set out above, the purposes of the Act are as follows (Sec. 2(1)):

  • to develop the skills of the South African workforce – to improve the quality of life of workers, their prospects of work and labour mobility; to improve productivity in the workplace and the competitiveness of employers; to promote self-employment; and to improve the delivery of social services;
  • to increase the levels of investment in education and training in the labour market and to increase the return on that investment;
  • to encourage employers – to use the workplace as an active learning environment; to provide employees with the opportunities to acquire new skills; to provide opportunities for new entrants to the labour market to gain work experience; to employ persons who find it difficult to be employed;
  • to encourage workers to participate in learning programmes;
  • to improve the employment prospects of persons previously disadvantaged by unfair discrimination and to redress those disadvantages through training and education;
  • to ensure the quality of learning in and for the workplace;
  • to assist – work-seekers to find work; retrenched workers to re-enter the labour market; employers to find qualified employees;
  • to provide and regulate employment services.