South Africa.


The companies’ efforts were however met with government’s counter strategies to maintain the practice of apartheid. Caltex, owned jointly by Texaco and SoCal is one example of foreign company operating in South Africa whose shareholders on many occasions tried hard to pass resolutions that were anti apartheid. This paper seeks to highlight Caltex, its conception in the South African market, its operations and how it affected the growth or downfall of the practice of apartheid.

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First we consider whether the entry of Caltex in South Africa empowered apartheid. Whether or not the utilitarian benefits of Caltex’s operations stood above the moral rights and justice violations that its presence seemed to propagate. In 1975 Caltex sought to expand its investment in South Africa. The expansion could cost $135 million, increase south Africa’s refining capacity by 11% and it promised a return on interest of about 20% i.e. approximately $27 million annually. In essence, a Return on Interest of $27 million annually, had a strong utilitarian benefit. After all Caltex is a profit making company and profit making is the major focus. However, this expansion would consequently strengthen the economy of the very government that was steadfast at maintaining apartheid as its legal policy. A strong economy meant a strong government and thus widespread apartheid.

The commitment that Caltex later showed to the plight of their black employees is another utilitarian benefit that requires consideration. They moved 40% of their black workers to refinery jobs initially held by whites and they moved a total of 29 to the topmost four of the white collar and skilled job categories. Even though most blacks remained in the lower job categories, Caltex had at least shown their commitment to eradicating apartheid.

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