Charter of the Community Exchange System


(Incorporated association not for gain registered in terms of Section 21 of the Companies Act of South Africa)

“The CES”


Aims of the CES

  1. To provide systems whereby individuals and groups are able to trade with each other by means of a complementary exchange system
  2. To act as a central record-keeper and clearing house for all transactions made within and between individual exchanges
  3. To provide an inter-exchange trading facility
  4. To provide assistance with trading procedures and exchange administration
  5. To promote the concept of complementary exchange systems
  6. To promote the concept of local economic development
  7. To promote the concept of Ubuntu and fair trade within trading relationships
  8. To promote the utilisation of spare production capacity in the formal economy
  9. To promote self-sufficiency and sustainability in local communities

Individual Exchanges utilising the CES’ facilities do so after having been approved by the Registrar of the CES, and given a charter on the following basis:

  1. Participating Exchanges will uphold the aims of the CES.
  2. Each Exchange shall adopt its own constitution and lodge a copy thereof with the Registrar of the CES within six months of joining, and thereafter, notify any changes as soon as possible. If an Exchange elects not to adopt a formal constitution then it shall lodge a founding statement indicating who the Administrator is and whether such official is subject to election and if so what such election procedures are.
  3. Each Exchange shall adopt a unit of account of its choice and advise the Registrar of the basis of its value (i.e. whether it is based on the national currency, on time or other unit of value).
  4. When giving effect to cross-unit transactions, the Registrar of the CES shall have
    the right to set conversion rates between different exchange units in order to reflect
    realistic rates of exchange. Conversion rates may be changed from time to time to adapt to changing circumstances. The Registrar shall be obliged to receive and consider representations by any administrators who may feel that the rate set at any one time are unrealistic or unfair.
  5. Each Exchange must lodge a set of Terms and Conditions of Trade for its own members within six months of joining, and any subsequent changes to these as soon as possible. If no Terms and Conditions are supplied then a set drafted by the CES will be taken to apply by default. Although the Registrar will try to display the relevant Terms and Conditions of Trade on the CES web-site, the Administrator of an Exchange will be responsible for making sure that all members of the exchange are made aware of them.
  6. An Exchange must set credit and debit limits for its members. The Registrar of the CES will be entitled to decline to record any transaction that will take members over their prescribed limits. If no limits are set by an Exchange then the Registrar may prescribe limits but will not be obliged to do so.
  7. The Registrar will be entitled to set debit and credit limits for individual exchanges as entities and decline to record any transaction that will take an exchange over its prescribed limits.
  8. The CES will be entitled to implement a levy, in the Exchange’s own currency unit, on all trades done by participants within an Exchange as follows:
    1. For and on behalf of the Exchange at a rate to be decided upon by each Exchange administration. Such levies will be credited to the account of the Administrator and used for the administration and development of the Exchange.
    2. For and on behalf of the CES at a rate to be advised by the Registrar from time to time.
  9. The Registrar of the CES may require the Administrator of an Exchange, or any person acting de facto in that capacity, to:
    1. Act within the constitution and rules of an Exchange.
    2. Take actions deemed necessary if the fiscal policies and actions of the Exchange are threatening the integrity of the Exchange or the CES as a whole.
    3. Report on any election process or procedure within the Exchange.
    4. Make the necessary entries to clear out stale accounts. Accounts shall be considered stale when they become so in terms of the rules of the exchange. If no such rules exist, the CES reserves the right to impose default conditions.
  10. Breach and cancellation of Charter
    1. If (i) an exchange breaches any term of its charter and remains so after having been given reasonable notice to remedy such breach; or (ii) There are no new members and no trading activity for a period of 12 months;
      then an Exchange may be considered to be in breach, and its charter may be cancelled.
    2. In such event, the Registrar shall be entitled to enter such entries in the accounts and records of the Exchange. The Registrar may direct that any member who has abused the system may be denied membership or participation in any other Exchange within the CES system.
  11. Dispute resolution
    In the event of any dispute of a constitutional nature arising within the Exchange, or any kind of dispute between the Exchange and any other exchange, or between the Exchange and any individual, any of the parties may request the Registrar of the CES to intervene as mediator in an attempt to arrive at a solution to the dispute.If mediation does not resolve the dispute, the Registrar shall have the right to order that the matter be referred to arbitration. In such event the arbitrator shall be appointed by the Registrar and preferably be a member of an exchange that is part of the CES system. The arbitrator shall be entitled to make awards in the currency of the home exchange and make an award as to who shall be debited for this. An arbitrator will also have the power to make orders as to his own costs, i.e. either to be paid by the administration, or by either or both of the parties to the dispute.The Registrar of the CES shall give effect to any award made by an arbitrator in the records of the Exchange, or Exchanges concerned, including making appropriate entries in the accounts of any individual parties involved. Any failure by an Exchange to disregard an award by an arbitrator shall be treated as a breach of the charter.The arbitrator shall be entitled to prescribe the rules of procedure, failing which the laws relating to arbitration in the country of the defendant shall apply.
  12. No agency
    A charter does not create an agency or joint venture or partnership between the parties, and the Exchange is not entitled to act on behalf of or commit the CES in any way.Participation may also be referred to as membership (implying users) from time to time, but this does not imply that an Exchange or any of its participants or administrators are or become members of the CES company as defined in its memorandum and articles of association.