EVEN TINY SHIFTS in government policies can lead to major changes in who are the winners and losers in African economies. The South African government announced in early May that it is changing regulations on its Black Economic Empowerment (BEE) programme, a move that will strengthen the position of the business barons. The department of trade and industry changed the weighting of BEE deals that benefit communities and special interest groups. Now companies seeking business with government will have to turn to the country’s business elite to raise their empowerment scores. It is yet to be seen whether the usual suspects will benefit, or whether a fresh batch of Anc-approved business folk will get the largesse.