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Economy News

Eskom considers sale of mortgage business

By: Reuters     12th April 2018 South Africa's state power utility Eskom is sounding out possible buyers for its mortgage business, a tender document showed on Wednesday, in what would be the first major privatisation deal under President Cyril Ramaphosa. Ramaphosa has made revamping state-owned firms like Eskom a top priority... 

Policy certainty, confidence improved in Q1 – index

By: Marleny Arnoldi     12th April 2018 The North West University’s (NWU’s) Policy Uncertainty Index (PUI) fell below the 50-mark baseline to 49.6 in the first quarter of this year, compared with 55.4 in the fourth quarter of 2017, confirming that South Africa may have turned a corner in its economic fortunes.  

Rand Water threatens to cut water to Emfuleni municipality over R419m debt

By: News24Wire      11th April 2018 Rand Water has announced that it will once again reduce the bulk water supply to the Emfuleni Local Municipality after it failed to reach a settlement on the payment of the municipality's R419-million debt. Rand Water's Justice Mohale said in a statement on Wednesday that the entity was taking... 

ABB forms digital research, innovation partnership with Wits

By: Schalk Burger     11th April 2018 Power management multinational ABB on Wednesday signed a research and development and innovation partnership agreement with the University of the Witwatersrand (Wits) with the view to support and tap into digital innovation to augment its own research, development and engineering work, said ABB... 

IMF chief optimistic on growth, but warns against trade protectionism

By: Reuters     11th April 2018 The International Monetary Fund (IMF) is optimistic on the outlook for global growth but warned darker clouds are looming due to fading fiscal stimulus and rising interest rates, the fund's Managing Director, Christine Lagarde, said on Wednesday. In a speech in Hong Kong, Lagarde said the top... 

South Africa's growth recovery at risk from lack of policy clarity – SARB

By: Reuters     11th April 2018 South Africa's recent economic growth turnaround is unlikely to last as 2017's boom fades and the outlook for reform remains murky, the South African Reserve Bank (SARB) said on Tuesday. The South African economy expanded by a surprising 1% in 2017 as agriculture recovered from a drought the year... 

Home Affairs vows to tackle long queues

By: Thabi Madiba     10th April 2018 Home Affairs Minister Malusi Gigaba on Tuesday directed his department to prepare a comprehensive report and strategy that will deal with managing long queues at Home Affairs branches across the country. Gigaba said this was high priority as the department remained committed to delivering high... 

Home Affairs vows to tackle long queues
Photo by Reuters
Home Affairs minister Malusi Gigaba

Extreme inequality in South Africa is constraining growth and investment  

By: Terence Creamer     10th April 2018 New analysis by the World Bank has confirmed that South Africa’s is not only the world’s most unequal country, but that extreme inequality has become a major constraint to higher levels of economic growth, because it is undermining policy certainty and depressing investment. The bank’s latest... 

Extreme inequality in South Africa is constraining growth and investment
World Bank program leader Sebastien Dessus and country director Paul Noumba Um on the negative impact that extreme inequality in South Africa is having on growth and investment. Camera Work & Editing: Darlene Creamer. Recorded: 10.4.2018

Gauteng open for business as InvestSA OSS launched

By: Simone Liedtke     10th April 2018 Boosting investor confidence is critical to positioning South Africa as a premium destination for foreign direct investment. To assist in achieving this, Trade and Industry Minister Dr Rob Davies, together with Gauteng Premier David Makhura, on Tuesday launched the InvestSA One Stop Shop (OSS) in... 

World Bank ups SA growth forecast but says slow growth hobbles economy

By: African News Agency      10th April 2018 The World Bank has increased its projected growth for South Africa's gross domestic product, but said on Tuesday that the economy needs to break free from the low growth and high inequality it has been trapped in for decades. According to a report entitled Jobs and Inequality, the World Bank said... 

World Bank ups SA growth forecast but says slow growth hobbles economy

International airline body calls for greater cooperation within Africa regarding aviation

By: Rebecca Campbell     10th April 2018 Collaboration between aviation stakeholders, not least governments, in Africa is essential if the aviation sector is to realise its full potential and accelerate the development of the continent. So asserted International Air Transport Association (Iata) VP: Africa Raphael Kuuchi in his keynote... 

Feb manufacturing output disappoints on firmer rand, bottlenecks

By: Reuters     10th April 2018 South Africa's manufacturing output came in below expectations in February following a run of five months of robust growth, with analysts pointing to a stronger rand and various bottlenecks, including the cost of doing business. Manufacturing output rose 0.6% year-on-year in February, well below... 

‘High priority’ IRP update to be published soon

By: Terence Creamer     10th April 2018 Department of Energy (DoE) director-general Thabane Zulu says the updated Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) is undergoing a final set of processes and consultations, as stipulated by Cabinet in December, before being published in the Government Gazette. Speaking at the Africa Power Roundtable in... 

‘High priority’ IRP update to be published soon
Photo by Dylan Slater
Department of Energy director-general Thabane Zulu

Aton makes formal offer to M&R shareholders

By: Simone Liedtke     10th April 2018 German family-owned business Aton has made a formal offer to Murray & Roberts (M&R) shareholders to acquire all shares in M&R at R15 a share. The company on Tuesday said it had already acquired a further 3.1% stake in M&R from a top ten shareholder and that it will soon buy a further 6.5%... 

Monale Ratsoma appointed as Brics bank Africa region director-general

By: Simone Liedtke     10th April 2018 The National Treasury’s deputy director-general for economic policy Monale Ratsoma has been appointed director-general of the Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa, or Brics, New Development Bank (NDB) Africa Regional Centre. The appointment is effective from April 16. 

South Africa's rand strengthens as global trade war fears ease

By: Reuters     10th April 2018 South Africa's currency firmed against the dollar early on Tuesday as investor jitters over an escalating US-China trade row cooled with eyes on domestic manufacturing data and the central bank's monetary policy review. At 06:30 GMT the rand was 0.52% firmer at 12.0350 per dollar compared to its... 

Saftu submits first parliamentary objection to minimum wage

By: News24Wire      9th April 2018 The parliamentary committee on labour has accepted the submission by the South African Federation of Trade Unions (Saftu) on both the minimum wage and proposed amendments to the labour laws.  The minimum wage was initially supposed to be introduced on May 1. However, this has been delayed. 

 Saftu submits first parliamentary objection to minimum wage

Gordhan appoints new Denel interim board

By: Rebecca Campbell     9th April 2018 Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan on Monday announced a completely new, high-powered, board to turn around beleaguered State-owned defence industrial group Denel. Technically, it is currently an interim board, he explained, because it had not yet been approved by the Cabinet. He... 

Gordhan appoints new Denel interim board
Photo by Dylan Slater
Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan

Rand spikes on Nene comments, renewed trade war fears

By: News24Wire      9th April 2018 The rand's weakening of over 1% to the US dollar just after noon on Monday has economists puzzled. At least one analyst attributed the spike to a knee-jerk reaction to comments made by Finance Minister Nhlanhla Nene on Monday morning. 

 Rand spikes on Nene comments, renewed trade war fears

Global IT spending to grow to $3.7tr in 2018 amid new growth cycle – Gartner

By: Schalk Burger     9th April 2018 The total global spend on information technology (IT) is projected to rise by 6.2% to $3.7-trillion this year, indicating a new growth cycle, a forecast released by market research multinational Gartner, on Monday, reveals. “This is the highest annual growth rate that Gartner has forecast since... 

Trade union to seek to put SAA into business rescue

By: Rebecca Campbell     9th April 2018 Trade union Solidarity announced on Sunday that it was to start court proceedings to place State-owned and financially very troubled national carrier South African Airways (SAA) under business rescue. In an open letter to President Cyril Ramaphosa, Finance Minister Nhlanhla Nene and Public... 

Trade union to seek to put SAA into business rescue

Govt to launch investment centre in Gauteng

By: African News Agency      9th April 2018 South African government is set to launch a provincial InvestSA One Stop Shop (OSS) in Gauteng in a bid to attract investment in the province, the Department of Trade and Industry (the dti) said on Monday.  The dti said that the objective of the provincial InvestSA OSS is to provide professional... 

Govt to launch investment centre in Gauteng
Photo by Creamer Media
DTI Minister Rob Davies

Ramaphosa refers Eskom allegations to Special Investigating Unit

By: News24Wire      6th April 2018 President Cyril Ramaphosa referred allegations of mismanagement and graft at state power utility Eskom and rail and ports group Transnet to the Special Investigating Unit (SIU). The SIU, which probes corruption and maladministration in the government, must include “any alleged serious... 

 Ramaphosa refers Eskom allegations to Special Investigating Unit
President Cyril Ramaphosa

SA public servants association warns of 'drastic measures' in wage discussions

By: African News Agency      6th April 2018 South Africa's Public Servants Association (PSA) on Friday called on workers to resort to "drastic measures" to force the government to conclude 2018 wage negotiations. "The negotiations process which has been delayed numerous times before by the employer continued on April 4 and 5 in the form of... 

 SA public servants association warns of 'drastic measures' in wage discussions

Future of SA space industry lies in collaborations and constellations

By: Rebecca Campbell     6th April 2018 International collaboration is essential for a successful South African space programme. “The future of the South African space industry lies in international collaboration in satellite constellations,” affirms South African private-sector space enterprise SCS Aerospace Group Executive Chairman... 

Capital equipment future looks bright

By: Erin Steenhoff-Snethlage     6th April 2018 Sales of new earthmoving and mining equipment are on an upward trend, breaking the three-year downward cycle that the industry has been in since the second quarter of 2014, according to the Construction and Mining Equipment Suppliers’ Association (Conmesa). 

Capital equipment future looks bright
LAWRENCE PETERS An increase in capital equipment sales in 2017 is a positive sign for the future of the industry

Visa launches challenge to create payment innovations

By: Schalk Burger     6th April 2018 Payment technology multinational Visa launched its global Everywhere Initiative in Africa for financial technology (fintech) start-ups to stimulate payment innovations and the nascent fintech industry in the region. “The goal is to allow for cashless economies and financial inclusion. Visa aims... 

Tangible results needed to maintain business confidence momentum – Sacci

By: Simone Liedtke     5th April 2018 Although an improved business mood is still present, it has to be augmented by an improvement in the real economy and further focus on better financial conditions, the South African Chamber of Commerce and Industry (Sacci) said on Thursday, releasing the results of its latest business confidence... 

WWF welcomes energy minister signing renewable energy contracts

By: African News Agency      5th April 2018 The World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) on Thursday applauded South African Energy Minister Jeff Radebe's signing off of a R56-billion contract with Independent Power Producers (IPPs). Radebe on Wednesday signed the hotly-contested renewable energy agreements with 27 independent power producers on... 

WWF welcomes energy minister signing renewable energy contracts
Energy Minister Jeff Radebe

Private sector activity expands at slower pace in March

By: Simone Liedtke     5th April 2018 The latest Standard Bank Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) shows that South Africa’s private sector activity slowed in March, with the index having decreased to 51.1 points, from 51.4 in February. Nevertheless, the PMI remained above the neutral 50-point level. 

Radebe says signing of 27 IPP agreements a ‘new dawn’ for renewables in South Africa

By: Terence Creamer     4th April 2018 Agreements opening the way for the construction of 27 renewable-energy independent power producer (IPP) projects, with a combined investment value of R56-billion and a combined capacity of 2 300 MW, were finally signed on Wednesday April 4, after a confidence-sapping delay of over two years. At... 

Radebe says signing of 27 IPP agreements a ‘new dawn’ for renewables in South Africa
Photo by Dylan Slater
Energy Minister Jeff Radebe

Motseng agrees to R200 000 penalty for bid rigging in fabric supply tenders

By: Marleny Arnoldi     4th April 2018 The Competition Tribunal on Wednesday confirmed a consent agreement with Motseng Investment Holdings to pay a R200 000 penalty with its now-closed subsidiary Motseng Trading, for the subsidiary’s involvement in the bid rigging of tenders issued by the National Treasury and the Armaments... 

SoE governance, operating models under the spotlight 

4th April 2018 Creamer Media's Chanel de Bruyn speaks to Engineering News Editor Terence Creamer about the shift in conversation away from only focusing on governance problems at State-owned enterprises (SoEs) to also include discussions on the operating models of these entities and particularly for Eskom and... 

SoE governance, operating models under the spotlight
SoE governance, operating models under the spotlight

Absa PMI falls below 50-point mark, Seifsa concerned about unresponsiveness to improving confidence

By: Marleny Arnoldi     3rd April 2018 The seasonally adjusted Absa Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) on Tuesday dropped back below the neutral 50-point mark in March, after encouraging improvements during the first two months of the year. The index shed 3.9 points to reach a level of 46.9 points in March, down from 50.8 in February.  

4AX acquires RainFin’s corporate debt marketplace

By: Anine Kilian     3rd April 2018 Online credit marketplace RainFin will sell its corporate debt marketplace to 4 Africa Exchange (4AX) in exchange for a strategic shareholding in 4AX.  The collective value proposition is well positioned to deepen South Africa’s sophisticated debt capital market and expand on the growing... 

Sars’ revenue collection increases by 6.3% y/y, but misses Treasury target

By: Anine Kilian     3rd April 2018 The South African Revenue Service (Sars) collected R1.216-trillion for the 2017/18 financial year, representing growth of R72.4-billion, or 6.3%, year-on-year. This was, however, lower than the R1.217-trillion target set by the National Treasury during the 2018 Budget speech. 

Sars’ revenue collection increases by 6.3% y/y, but misses Treasury target
Photo by Creamer Media
Finance Minister Nhlanhla Nene

Ramaphosa dealing with Moyane suspension – Nene

By: News24Wire      3rd April 2018 Finance Minister Nhlanhla Nene said on Tuesday President Cyril Ramaphosa is dealing with the suspension of former South African Revenue Service (Sars) commissioner Tom Moyane, who left the agency last month under a cloud. “The issue of Moyane is being dealt with by the president... I hope it... 

 Ramaphosa dealing with Moyane suspension – Nene
President Cyril Ramaphosa

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