Implementation of Consumer Protection Act Delayed
The Minister of Trade & Industry published a notice in the Government Gazette on Thursday, 23 September 2010 delaying the implementation of the Consumer Protection Act, 2008 (CPA) until 31 March 2011.
The CPA was signed by the President on 24 April 2009. In terms of the transitional provisions of the CPA, the CPA is to take effect incrementally. Certain framework provisions of the CPA, including the definitions sections and the provisions conferring regulation-making powers on the Minister, came into effect on 24 April 2010. The majority of the remaining provisions of the CPA were due to come into effect on the “general effective date” 18 months after the date on which the CPA was signed. This would have been 24 October 2010. Provision is made, however, for the general effective date to be postponed by the Minister for a period of not more than six months, if additional time is required for the adequate preparation of the administrative systems necessary to ensure the efficient and effective implementation of the CPA. The Minister has now exercised this power.
The draft regulations that will provide important details regarding the manner in which the CPA will be implemented, have not yet been formally released for public comment. In terms of the CPA, draft regulations are required to be published for public comment and the Minister is also required to consult with various affected parties, including the National Consumer Commission and provincial regulatory bodies before finalising the