MultiChoice CEO Calvo Mawela is demanding global streaming behemoth, Netflix, to contribute to the local people’s employment, pay taxes, and adhere to the rules of the local Black Economic Empowerment (BEE).
Responding to questions about the MultiChoice CEO, the company’s corporate affairs executive, Jackie Rakitla, said that Mawela wants all pay-TV, free, and video entertainment companies to have their businesses registered in South Africa.
Above all, he wants them to honor their obligation to pay tax and contribute to the employment of the people, as stipulated in the BEE.
The BEE is a growth strategy aiming to include the black majority into the mainstream economy. The creation of employment and stimulation of further economic growth are the priorities of this initiative.
The BEE aims to help in addressing inequality which is considered the weakest point of South Africa.
Appealing to Netflix, Showmax, and other subscription video-on-demand (SVOD) players, Rakitla remarked that ensuring that the playing field is even would make “a healthy competitive environment” possible.
She also supports having a wide range of pay TV service options – both free and paid – because this scenario would benefit the customers.
Mawela has called on the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (ICASA) to regulate SVOD companies in the nation.
The MultiChoice CEO’s call to action comes after David Shapiro, deputy chairman of Sasfin Securities, disregarded his appeal to control Netflix’s operations in the country stringently.
Shapiro expressed his supportive stance for Netflix. In a statement on Business Day TV, he said that the mainstream international SVOD firm is merely progress. Shapiro added that Netflix is the way to go, and not DStv, the pay-TV subsidiary of MultiChoice.
Mawela has been a fierce advocate for his country, admonishing Netflix for having an unjust advantage in his native land. He has contended that the SVOD giant can offer its services to the South African customers even if it does not pay taxes.
In addition, he said that Netflix does not adhere to similar rules as local broadcasters as DStv do. In May, Netflix expressed its intention to abide by the South African laws and taxation policy.