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Economy News

Incentives needed to attract and retain teachers in South Africa – study

7th October 2011 Incentives should be introduced to attract and retain better teachers as well as teachers in scarce subjects. International experience shows incentives for teacher performance do work and should be introduced, says development think-tank Centre for Development and Enterprise (CDE) executive... 

Internship programmes helping SA tackle skills shortages

By: Dimakatso Motau     7th October 2011 The South African government is taking the initiative to deal with the issue of key scarce skills shortages in the country, by offering young professional internships, in conjunction with the French government. 

Market signal crucial to stimulating green innovation, Gore avers

By: Terence Creamer     7th October 2011 Climate activist and former US Vice President Al Gore says a definite market signal is needed to accelerate a global transition to a low-carbon economy and stimulate the research and development (R&D) required to lower the costs associated with renewable technologies. During a recent address in... 

Africa may be poised to reap ‘demographic dividend’, but risks persist 

By: Terence Creamer     6th October 2011 While in no way assured, Africa may be poised to reap the benefits of a ‘demographic dividend’ in the coming decades as its young and increasingly affluent citizenry expands to number two-billion, the equivalent of one-fifth of the world's population by 2050. In a series of reports, Standard... 

Standard Bank issues African growth warning, but presents bullish long-term view

By: Terence Creamer     6th October 2011 There was “at least a 40% probability” that Africa’s growth could slump to around 2% over the coming 24 months as a result of spillover effects from the current economic problems in Europe and the US, Standard Bank group economist Goolam Ballim warned on Thursday. Such growth rates would be well... 

Factors impeding private infrastructural investment also need attention

By: Terence Creamer     5th October 2011 South African policymakers should seek to address factors impeding private sector infrastructure expenditure, particularly given that private gross domestic fixed investment (GDFI) is twice that of the public sector with a commensurate impact on infrastructure input supply industries,... 

Walmart merger will 'devastate' local jobs – govt 

By: Sapa     5th October 2011 Walmart's acquisition of Massmart can have a "potentially devastating" effect on local jobs, three government departments said on Tuesday.The transaction should be sent back to the Competition Tribunal for proper consideration and more effective conditions to be imposed, the departments of... 

Labour laws make employing unskilled workers too expensive 

By: Brindaveni Naidoo     4th October 2011 Centre for Development and Enterprise executive director Ann Bernstein said the closure of clothing factories in Newcastle, in KwaZulu-Natal, reflected the constraints of existing labour legislation on job creation in South Africa. The Southern African Clothing and Textile Workers’ Union said in... 

Sacci president calls for Indaba to build economy’s resilience

By: Brindaveni Naidoo     4th October 2011 South African Chamber of Commerce and Industry (Sacci) president Chose Choeu said 2011 has been a difficult year for business and for organised business, with confidence having come under pressure as growth stagnated. Addressing delegates at the chamber’s convention in Johannesburg, he called... 

AG gives Public Works a disclaimer – report

By: Sapa     4th October 2011 Public Works Minister Gwen Mahlangu-Nkabinde's department has been given a disclaimer, one of the worst audit reports possible, according to a report on Tuesday. 

New black business grouping meets with Zuma

By: Terence Creamer     3rd October 2011 The nascent Black Business Council (BBC), which was convened last month after a number of black business formations expressed unhappiness with their treatment within Business Unity South Africa (Busa), reported on Monday that it had met with President Jacob Zuma on September 30 and that the... 

Zuma says infrastructure push could yield up to 100 000 jobs

By: Terence Creamer     3rd October 2011 Current plans for large-scale infrastructure developments in South Africa, such as electricity plants, rail and road upgrades and water management schemes, will sustain between 50 000 and 100 000 jobs in construction up to 2015, President Jacob Zuma told business leaders in Johannesburg on... 

SA exports at risk as eurozone crisis lingers

By: Terence Creamer     30th September 2011 The two key threats for South Africa should the current eurozone crisis transmission into a Lehman Brothers-type event would be a marked increase in risk premiums, making it harder for the country to borrow, and a fall off in demand, which would damage South Africa’s exports, a leading UK... 

SADI shows slight increase in development in SA

By: Sapa     30th September 2011 South Africa is showing gentle improvement in human and economic development, according to the latest South African Development Index (SADI) released on Friday. 

Bank cuts SA growth outlook, says stimulus may be needed to preserve growth

By: Terence Creamer     29th September 2011 Banking group Absa Capital, which has typically maintained a more optimistic view of South Africa's growth prospects than many other commentators, has not only lowered it growth forecast for 2011 and 2012, but is also now cautioning that the downside risks to it's current 'baseline' have... 

SA ready and willing to bolster IMF’s crisis-fighting firepower

By: Terence Creamer     28th September 2011 The International Monetary Fund (IMF) needed to play a more assertive role in helping to resolve economic crises “sooner rather than later” and South Africa would, therefore, support moves to bolster the financial resources of the IMF to enable it to make decisive earlier interventions.... 

Alive to fiscal drag threat, Gordhan hints to prolonged public stimulus

By: Terence Creamer     28th September 2011 Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan indicated on Wednesday that he was alive to the threat posed by a too rapid move towards fiscal consolidation, particularly in an environment where the anticipated handover from public to private investment in spurring the economic recovery was not taking shape.... 

SA economy shed 395 000 jobs in 2010 – Stats SA  

By: Sapa     28th September 2011 About 395 000 jobs were lost in 2010, Statistics SA said on Wednesday. Around 13.1-million people were employed in 2010 compared to 13.5-million in 2009. "This indicates the country has not yet fully recovered from the economic downturn in 2009," Stats SA deputy director general for population... 

Trade unions can be liable for strike damage – court 

By: Sapa     28th September 2011 The Supreme Court of Appeal has found that trade unions can be held liable for damage caused by workers during strikes. In the judgment on Tuesday, which upheld an earlier ruling by the Western Cape High Court, Justice Mahomed Navsa wrote that the country "could not be subjected to the tyranny of... 

AfDB loan concludes 100-MW Eskom wind farm funding phase 

By: Terence Creamer     26th September 2011 The $365-million African Development Bank (AfDB) loan to South African power utility Eskom, which was announced on Sunday, has effectively concluded the funding phase for the 100-MW Sere wind farm project and a process is already under way to now procure the key components for the development.... 

Company liquidations stats turned negative in August

By: Loni Prinsloo     26th September 2011 The number of South African businesses liquidated during August this year increased when compared with the same month in 2010, a new report released by Statistics South Africa (StatsSA) on Monday shows. Year-on year liquidations rose 24.3% from 243 liquidations in August 2010 to 302 this year.... 

SMEs optimistic about growth prospects despite economic uncertainty

By: Loni Prinsloo     26th September 2011 While there is a general decline in confidence in global and local economies, small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) across the world were generally positive about their own growth prospects, the Sage business index has shown. The survey, which included more than 10 000 global respondents,... 

SA is open for business – Zuma 

By: SA News     26th September 2011 South Africa is open for business and is looking to explore opportunities in the small and medium enterprises (SMMEs) in the US, says President Jacob Zuma. 

Can Zuma’s commission close SA’s infrastructure delivery gap?  

By: Terence Creamer     23rd September 2011 Despite the rhetoric in the New Growth Path about shifting South Africa’s future economic growth trajectory from the prevailing consumption-led bias to one based on productive activities, South Africa’s mining, manufacturing and agriculture sectors remain in crisis. The sharp 6% decline in... 

Centre of maths, science excellence launched in Senegal

By: Dimakatso Motau     23rd September 2011 A second centre for excellence in maths and science in Africa has been opened under the auspices of the African Institute for Mathematical Sciences (AIMS) this month. 

Can Zuma’s commission close SA’s infrastructure delivery gap?

By: Terence Creamer     23rd September 2011 Despite the rhetoric in the New Growth Path about shifting South Africa’s future economic growth trajectory from the prevailing consumption-led bias to one based on productive activities, South Africa’s mining, manufacturing and agricultural sectors remain in crisis.  

Maize milling acquisition approval expected this month

By: Tracy Hancock     23rd September 2011 Agricultural group Afgri expects Competition Commission approval for its acquisition of Pride Milling’s yellow maize milling business operating in Ermelo, Kinross and Bethal, in Mpumalanga, before the end of this month. Speaking at the groups financial results presentation for the year ending... 

Engineers called upon to bolster Zuma’s infrastructure commission 

By: Terence Creamer     22nd September 2011 Public Works Minister Gwen Mahlangu-Nkabinde has called on the engineering fraternity to put forward names of individuals that could participate in the secretariat that will be established to support the newly formed Presidential Infrastructure Coordinating Commission, which was convened for the... 

Brics to consider euro bonds plan – Gordhan

By: Reuters     22nd September 2011 A meeting of emerging economies on Thursday will consider a Brazilian proposal to buy European bonds to help crisis-hit euro zone countries, South Africa's Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan said on Wednesday. But Gordhan said it was just one idea that would be examined during the meeting in... 

Infrastructure key to freeing SA from low-growth shackles – Roubini 

By: Terence Creamer     21st September 2011 South Africa would need to accelerate its investment into physical and human capital to improve on its current “disappointing” growth performance and break free from the structural constraints that made it difficult for the country to expand at rates similar to those being achieved in... 

SA's reputation among G8 countries improving

By: Brindaveni Naidoo     21st September 2011 Perceptions of South Africa’s reputation among the Group of Eight (G8) countries were improving, the Reputation Institute revealed on Wednesday. South Africa is ranked 33 out of 50 countries measured in the latest study undertaken by the institute, and shows steady improvement from a score of... 

Business should be more involved in planning SA’s economic future

By: Jean McKenzie     21st September 2011 Business has to be more involved in mapping out South Africa’s economic future, scenario planner Dr Clem Sunter said this week, arguing that the approach of government’s National Planning Commission was too academic. Speaking at the Master Builders South Africa yearly congress in Cape Town,... 

Africa, Asia the economic future – Ramos 

By: Sapa     21st September 2011 Africa and Asia can be the future of the global economy, Maria Ramos, group CEO of Absa, said on Wednesday.  

Black representation in JSE-listed companies remains low – Busa  

By: Brindaveni Naidoo     20th September 2011 The representation of black people in general, and black women in particular, in executive positions in companies listed on the JSE remains low, Business Unity South Africa (Busa) said on Tuesday. An independent study showed that the percentages of black exective directors, CEOs and CFOs were... 

Assembly approves FET colleges Bill 

By: Sapa     20th September 2011 The National Assembly approved the Further Education and Training (FET) Colleges Amendment Bill on Tuesday. Introducing the debate, Higher Education and Training Minister Blade Nzimande said the bill would strengthen and make the FET sector the centre of skills development in South Africa.  

US concerned by localisation stipulations in SA’s renewables tender

By: Terence Creamer     19th September 2011 US Assistant Secretary of Commerce Michael Camuñez, who is leading a trade delegation to South Africa that includes 14 American renewable energy firms, voiced some concern on Monday about the local content stipulations contained with the country’s recently released bidding documentation. The... 

NUM to march on Eskom over wage dispute

By: Sapa     16th September 2011 The National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) will march to Eskom's Johannesburg office on Saturday over stalled wage talks. "Tomorrow (Saturday) will be a show of force. It will be an indication to Eskom that nothing about us without us is possible," NUM official Job Matsepe said in a statement on... 

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