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Terence Creamer

Terence Creamer

Terence Creamer is the Editor of Engineering News and a Deputy Editor for Mining Weekly.

He also has editorial responsibility for Polity.org.za and Creamer Media's Research Channel Africa.

Tel: +2711 622 3744

Email: newsdesk@engineeringnews.co.za

Editorial Insight

Pain, but also change

By: Terence Creamer     21st March 2014 There has been much commentary about whether anything has in fact changed at Eskom over the past six years after the country descended into its first national load-shedding episode since 2008 – an event which felt like much like Yogi Berra’s proverbial “déjà vu all over again”. The arguments... 

Growth not enough 

By: Terence Creamer     14th March 2014 The inaugural Africa Transformation Report has one key and unequivocal message: the resumption of growth in many African countries is a necessary yet insufficient ingredient to sustainable development. Six of the world’s fastest growing economies are currently in Africa, including Angola,... 

Next Finance Minister

By: Terence Creamer     7th March 2014 No matter who is appointed South Africa’s next Finance Minister – I personally hope Pravin Gordhan is willing to stay on – it will be important that the current momentum is sustained in three of critical areas: reducing the fiscal deficit; pressing ahead with procurement reforms; and galvanising... 

Complex debate 

By: Terence Creamer     28th February 2014 There is no question that the issue of shale energy has emerged as a major topic of discussion for government, economic and energy leaders. It was, therefore, interesting to be offered a perspective into the role that unconventional oil and gas could play in future from an individual who keeps a... 

Municipal Remedy? 

By: Terence Creamer     21st February 2014 There is no question that the deterioration, even collapse, of municipal infrastructure lies at the heart of the recent surge in service delivery protests, which have, sadly, been characterised by loss of life, destruction of property and violence. Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs... 

Seeing is believing

By: Terence Creamer     14th February 2014 In the dying decades of apartheid, the anti-democracy scaremongers continually pointed to the “rest of Africa” as a cautionary tale of what South Africa could become in the event of majority rule. Fast-forward a few decades and the neighbourhood, which still has many serious problems, appears far... 

Financial stability the ‘first’ priority

By: Terence Creamer     7th February 2014 In recent conversations with both the outgoing CEO of Eskom, Brian Dames, and the State-owned utility’s chairperson, Zola Tsotsi, it became clear that, more than anything else, next CEO will be expected to have the capacity to wrap his or her arms around the financial difficulties currently... 

Beyond ability

By: Terence Creamer     31st January 2014 Without question, the job of Eskom CEO is a difficult one. The organisation is large and complex. It has real operational challenges, associated partly with the age of its plant, partly with the age of its primary-input sources and partly with the material maintenance backlog that prevails. Its... 

Forget it?

By: Terence Creamer     24th January 2014 The African National Congress’ 2014 election manifesto outlines a subtle, yet material, shift in thinking with regards the future structure and composition of the National Planning Commission (NPC). Under the heading ‘Building a Democratic Developmental State’, the manifesto has the following to... 

Power priorities

By: Terence Creamer     17th January 2014 Despite having been a dominant social and economic theme since the load-shedding crisis of 2008, South Africa’s electricity balance remains precarious and, unhappily, we begin 2014 knowing full well that few of the uncertainties that prevailed five years ago have been resolved. As was the case... 

Sense and nonsense

By: Terence Creamer     13th December 2013 On the whole, the draft update on South Africa Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) for the 20-year period from 2010 through to 2030 appears to be a most sensible document. It begins by taking account of the fact that electricity demand has not grown anywhere near the pace envisaged when the plan was... 

Flatlining?

By: Terence Creamer     6th December 2013 The adjectives used to describe South Africa’s third-quarter growth statistics spoke volumes: dismal, disastrous, disappointing and disturbing. The figures were always expected to be bad, mainly owing to the fact that the reporting period coincided with protracted strikes in the automotive... 

Age of efficiency? 

By: Terence Creamer     29th November 2013 It may be the least thrilling component of the energy equation, but energy efficiency is beginning to emerge from the shadows as policymakers and business people alike start to discover and appreciate its true value. In fact, the International Energy Agency’s latest World Energy Outlook (WEO)... 

Creative Cures?

By: Terence Creamer     22nd November 2013 When it comes to fines for anticompetitive conduct, it's a case of being damned if you do and damned if you don't. The issue of remedies has always been, and will always be, controversial. Many are demanding harsher punishments to match the pernicious nature of the crime, while others caution... 

Educating for Competitiveness

By: Terence Creamer     15th November 2013 Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe last week acknowledged that achieving sustainable competitiveness has never been a more pressing challenge for South Africa. But he also stressed the disproportionate importance of mathematics and science education in attaining that goal. Speaking at the... 

Africa Unite!

By: Terence Creamer     8th November 2013 The message surrounding the virtues of greater economic integration across Africa is not new. However, the conversation appears to be shifting from rhetoric to implementation – albeit at a pace that does adequately reflective of the urgency required. African Development Bank (AfDB) president... 

Pushing the Plan

By: Terence Creamer     1st November 2013 Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan reinforced government's stated commitment to the highly contested National Development Plan (NDP) in his Medium-Term Budget Policy Statement (MTBPS) address to lawmakers, indicating that the plan offered a platform for dealing with a number of the domestic... 

Thaw in relations

By: Terence Creamer     25th October 2013 The European Union’s (EU’s) frustrations with South Africa boiled over in July when European Commissioner for Trade Karel De Gucht used extremely strong language to criticise South Africa’s decision to terminate the bilateral investment treaties (BITs) it has with a number of European countries.... 

Engineering census

By: Terence Creamer     18th October 2013 An ambitious survey has been launched in a bid to determine the size and composition of South Africa’s population of engineers, technologists and technicians, as well as to assess the true nature of the skills gaps that are constraining the roll-out of the country’s multibillion-rand National... 

Flows and ebbs 

By: Terence Creamer     11th October 2013 The latest International Monetary Fund (IMF) staff report on South Africa, which was published last week following Article IV Consultations that took place between May 22 and June 4, make for unhappy reading. Particularly startling was the warning that any prolonged halt to capital inflows into... 

Weighing the options

By: Terence Creamer     4th October 2013 The Department of Energy (DoE) has formally launched the much-anticipated public-consultation phase for the formulation of an Integrated Energy Plan (IEP) for South Africa, which it says should be published during the course of 2014. In July Cabinet endorsed a draft Integrated Energy Planning... 

Value in value chains

By: Terence Creamer     27th September 2013 There is broad stakeholder support for South Africa’s desire to increasingly extract economic value from its infrastructure programmes by raising local-content levels. There is also a commitment from large companies, such as miners and manufacturers, to interrogate ways of doing likewise,... 

Rail revival?

By: Terence Creamer     20th September 2013 There is genuine concern that State-owned engineering services company Transnet Engineering (TE) could undermine private South African businesses seeking to supply railways equipment not only to Transnet Freight Rail (TFR), but into the rest of Africa. These concerns stem from fears that the... 

The case for 

By: Terence Creamer     13th September 2013 Only days after the Alliance Summit of the African National Congress, the South African Communist Party and the Congress of South African Trade Unions reaffirmed the position that South Africa required a “well-resourced State-led industrial and trade policy”, one of the world’s leading... 

Beyond access to services

By: Terence Creamer     6th September 2013 The statement in Government’s 2012 Development Indicators Report that the evidence suggests life has changed for the better in South Africa since 1994 and the country is steadily making progress has been given little credence or publicity. Released last month by Minister in The Presidency for... 

Lack of Urgency?

By: Terence Creamer     30th August 2013 As the Department of Energy (DoE) moves to revise South Africa's Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) for electricity and finalise a larger Integrated Energy Plan to 2050, some are calling for South Africa’s electricity planning and investment paradigm to be overhauled, while others are calling for... 

Resilience & Risk

By: Terence Creamer     23rd August 2013 There is tremendous concern about the possible impact that slowing economic growth in China could have on Africa, owing to the fact that Chinese demand for resources has provided a critical underpin for recent economic expansion in a number of African countries. However, African Development Bank... 

Pressing energy issues

By: Terence Creamer     16th August 2013 Two long-awaited and potentially landscape altering energy-related documents were released last week. First, the Department of Energy (DoE) released the Draft Integrated Energy Planning Report for public consultation and announced that it will host stakeholder consultations in various parts of... 

Public Capital

By: Terence Creamer     9th August 2013 The latest statistics showing the capital expenditure performance of South Africa’s public sector make for interesting reading. Published by Statistics South Africa (Stats SA), the Capital Expenditure by Public Sector Survey shows that a combined R202.2-billion was invested on capital programmes... 

Political calculus

By: Terence Creamer     2nd August 2013 “Learning by doing”, has become a favourite phrase of Minister in The Presidency Responsible for the National Planning Commission Trevor Manuel when talking about the next phase of the National Development Plan (NDP). In his June 13 Budget Vote address, Manuel argued that, while “we can only grow... 

Martins’ Inbox

By: Terence Creamer     26th July 2013 There is little clarity as to why President Jacob Zuma decided to switch the portfolios of Ministers Dipuo Peters, from energy to transport, and Ben Martins, from transport to energy. More certain, though is that both will have their work cut out for them in their new roles, with Peters having... 

Push Back

By: Terence Creamer     19th July 2013 There is still much uncertainty about the future of the National Development Plan (NDP). However, President Jacob Zuma has move to offer something of a bulwark against what is generally perceived to be a steady and ongoing erosion of the plan and its credibility. The President did so by... 

Charm offensive

By: Terence Creamer     12th July 2013 South Africa has made no secret of that fact that it is planning a charm offensive around the reauthorisation of the Africa Growth and Opportunity Act (Agoa) beyond its September 30, 2015, expiry date. It is also clear that Africa’s largest economy it is not merely prioritising Agoa’s extension,... 

Urgent challenge

By: Terence Creamer     5th July 2013 More and more observers are warning that the high number of young people not in employment, education or training, also known as ‘NEETs’, is emerging as South Africa's most urgent social challenge. Speaking at the Department of Trade and Industry's inaugural economic dialogue in late June, the... 

Development ‘umbrella’

By: Terence Creamer     28th June 2013 Earlier this month, President Jacob Zuma responded positively to an appeal by Minister in The Presidency Responsible for the National Planning Commission Trevor Manuel for the National Development Plan (NDP) to be reaffirmed as the country’s development ‘road map’. However, he also deftly recast... 

Winners and Losers

By: Terence Creamer     21st June 2013 Given the strong links of this economy with the fortunes, or otherwise, of commodity cycles and trends, many South Africans will be interested in a new piece of analysis by Barclays. It shows that not all commodities will lose out should China succeed in transitioning to a growth model... 

Work and education

By: Terence Creamer     14th June 2013 With National Youth Day due to be commemorated over the weekend, it is opportune to reflect on the position of young people in South African society generally and in the economy more specifically. Sadly, the picture is a fairly depressing one. The education system has simply not lived up to the... 

Wake-up call

By: Terence Creamer     7th June 2013 South Africa’s dismal growth performance during the first quarter of 2013 should serve as a serious wake-up call for all South Africans, but especially those who have leadership responsibilities in government, business and within the labour movement. The quarter-on-quarter economic expansion of... 

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