Legal and Commercial Associate - South African Reforestation Project



Imperative is a global carbon project development company that aims to be in the top decile for quality in the carbon projects market. We have a build-own-operate model and specialise in the design, development and operation of carbon credit projects that help combat climate change while promoting biodiversity conservation, economic growth and social development in the countries in which we operate. With a strong commitment to environmental and social responsibility, we are seeking a highly skilled and experienced Legal and Commercial Associate to join our dynamic team.

Imperative and its partner on this project NatCarbon aim to be in the top decile for quality in the carbon projects market.  We are thought leaders and pioneers of practical, scalable, high-impact project activities. With our efforts on this project and others in our portfolio we intend to lift and shape the market for the better, and this role will play a key role in that mission.


This ultra-high-quality carbon credit project consists of replanting 100,000 hectares of the native Spekboom species in South Africa. The project will transform large areas of the rural South African landscape and will generate significant carbon credits, contributing meaningfully to both the restoration of the native thicket biome and to removing CO2 from the atmosphere.


Reporting directly to the Project Business Director, and liaising with Group Senior Legal Counsel, the scope of this role is multi-disciplinary. The Legal and Commercial Associate will be Imperative’s key legal and administrative representative in South Africa, responsible for contractual and local legal matters related to Imperative’s native forest regeneration project on the Eastern Cape. The Legal and Commercial Associate will also be responsible for the delivery of Imperative’s contractual arrangements in South Africa, ensuring quality and consistency of service and compliance with governing policy.


Key responsibilities for the role include:

  • Legal matters: Be the key contact on the ground in South Africa for day-to-day legal matters in relation to the project and coordinate as needed with the Project Business Director and Group Senior Legal Counsel.
  • Stakeholder Engagement: Foster strong relationships with strategic partners, landowners, local communities, governmental agencies and other stakeholders to ensure project buy-in, support, and cooperation.
  • Negotiation: Lead the first review and negotiation of agreements and standard terms to ensure they reflect Imperative’s preferred policy position and comply with relevant laws and regulations.
  • Contract management: Develop and implement best practice, standards and tools for contract management and contribute to team know how and compliance.
  • Contract administration: Deliver the day-to-day tasks involved in contract and subcontract lifecycle management, from initiation to closure, ensuring that all contracts are properly approved, executed, recorded, tracked, stored, and maintained, and that any changes, amendments, renewals, or terminations are handled appropriately.
  • Registration: Handle registration matters as required with government agencies and ministries in South Africa.
  • Reporting: Coordinate with related areas including operations, finance and project controls and assist in the delivery of the contractual reporting requirements.
  • Compliance: Ensure compliance with all relevant laws, regulations, and permits.
  • Dispute resolution: Assist in resolving disputes and confer with contractors and other business units concerning contract payments and compliance.
  • Confidentiality: Ensure the safeguarding of confidential information when handling our client, contractor and business data.


Key skills and attributes required for the role are:

  • Contract law: A good knowledge and understanding of contract law, principles, and practices, and the ability to apply them to different scenarios and contexts.
  • Land law: Familiarity with South African land law as it relates to leases, rural property and land subdivision would be an asset.
  • Attention to detail: Strong attention to detail, accuracy, and organisational skills.
  • Integrity: Demonstrate a high level of drive and personal integrity and be passionate about making a positive difference to the world.
  • Communication: Excellent written and verbal communication skills, and the ability to communicate clearly, professionally, and courteously with diverse audiences and stakeholders.
  • Interpersonal: A relationship builder and influencer, able to collaborate and work with others, especially in an international context.
  • Proactive: Flexible in managing workload across changing priorities and conflicting demands.


  • A bachelor’s degree in law, legal studies or equivalent professional qualification.
  • Admission to practice law in South Africa would be an asset.


  • A minimum of three to five years of experience in contract management, in a similar industry or sector.
  • A proven track record of successfully negotiating, drafting, and managing complex and high-value contracts with various internal and external parties.


South Africa, ideally Port Elizabeth


Fluency in spoken and written English is a requirement. Afrikaans is advantageous.


At Imperative, we are passionate about our values are encourage all team members to embrace them.

  • Integrity: We act honourably and are guided by a strong moral compass. If things go wrong, we put our hand up, admit it and adapt.
  • Momentum: Speed matters. We have a bias to action. We think quick, we plan tirelessly, we mitigate risks but above all, we take action.
  • Purpose: We are driven by our desire to make the world better, with every interaction, process and project.
  • Accountability: We do what we say, and we deliver. We seek to be the best at what we do.
  • Collaboration: We celebrate diversity of thought, values and backgrounds and seek to harness the strength of our people and partners to achieve more than we individually can, through teamwork and creativity.
  • Tenacity: We are highly ambitious, driven and hardworking. We persist until we deliver impact.
Spekboom Project

South Africa, ideally Port Elizabeth

Fluent in spoken and written English, Afrikaans is advantageous

Admission to practice law in South Africa would be an asset


Apply for this position

"*" indicates required fields

Drop files here or
Accepted file types: doc, docx, pdf, Max. file size: 10 MB, Max. files: 2.