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Trade News

Synfuel expansion project up in the air

By: System Author     28th May 1999 South African synthetic fuels and petrochemicals giant Sasol has announced that its proposed multibillion-rand Sky High expansion project has been put on hold for at least the next two to three years. As a result of the dramatic plunge in the price of crude oil, fuel and chemicals, in conjunction... 

Industry emerges more globally competitive

By: System Author     28th May 1999 DESPITE going through a tough time in the face of a reduction in import tariffs, this has been a necessary evil for the local textile industry, among others, to emerge more globally competitive. This was the view of Trade and Industry Minister Alec Erwin when speaking at a signing ceremony held... 

Global interest in proprietary technology

By: System Author     28th May 1999 Worldwide interest in the commercial application of Fischer-Tropsch technology to monetise natural gas is at a high at the moment, said Sasol Technology (Sastech) manager: Fischer-Tropsch technology PR Heydenrich in a paper presented at the AIChe spring meeting held in Houston, Texas, in March.... 

World’s most-desirable new natural resource

By: System Author     28th May 1999 Natural gas is fast becoming the world’s most desirable source of future hydrocarbons, and will play a far more important role in the global energy mix. The rationale for this trend is axiomatic, as the globe has abundant reserves of natural gas, and the extent of known reserves is... 

KZN rug factory targets US textile market

By: System Author     28th May 1999 Textile producer Lotus 2000 is to implement a R24-million working capital investment to cover its latest expansion, which is aimed at expanding its export profile in the US and Japanese markets. The expansion includes the purchase of two new looms at a cost of R6,5-million each, in addition to... 

SA textile sector sews up its frayed edges

By: System Author     28th May 1999 Boasting a massive R4,5-billion re-equipping since 1995, the South African textile industry is showing signs of a long-awaited turnaround in its fortunes. This is the word from Textile Federation executive director Brian Brink who states, “we have gone through a big jolt of investment,... 

South African flowers blooming in Europe

By: System Author     28th May 1999 Exports of indigenous flowers and plants to Europe are increasingly offering new opportunities to the South African flower industry. In addition to the R204-million-worth of fresh cut flowers and foliage exported from South Africa every year – mainly to the Far East – protea exports... 

Transport sector set for transformation

By: System Author     28th May 1999 The final version of the national Department of Transport’s 14-month study – Moving South Africa (MSA) – to determine the transport challenges facing South Africa at the start of the twenty-first century was released earlier this month, containing several ‘action... 

Call for no surcharge on imported valves

By: System Author     21st May 1999 There should be no surcharge on any imported valves – instead, the government should focus on controlling the quality of valves that are being imported by unscrupulous dealers who are bringing in inferior-quality products, MacNeil Steel & Valves (MNSV) marketing director Brian Saverton... 

Low-quality imports abound

By: System Author     21st May 1999 Greater use should be made of local manufacturers due to the proliferation of low-quality imported products being dumped on the South African market, says Republic Transmission joint MD Joachim Livonius. The 19-year-old gearbox and actuator manufacturer, which deals mainly with the valve... 

Mining imports surge

By: System Author     21st May 1999 Valve imports for the mining industry have increased from 66% of the total market ten years ago to their current levels of 80%, providing a challenge for local valve manufacturers and their supplying foundries to find niche markets for their products, says Steloy Group MD Danie Slabbert.... 

Spinach still packs a punch

By: System Author     21st May 1999 THE production of spinach using home-based hydroponics can make a substantial contribution towards the economic upliftment of urban communities, a study commissioned by the Greater Pretoria Metropolitan Council has found. The study also considers the growing of green peppers, spinach and tomatoes... 

Japan supports African revival

By: System Author     21st May 1999 Japan is firmly committed to the practical implementation of the ‘African Renaissance’. This was made clear by Japan’s State Secretary for Foreign Affairs – equivalent to Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs in South Africa – Professor Keizo Takemi earlier this month... 

E-commerce: targeting blue-eyed consumers

By: System Author     21st May 1999 Information technology (IT) group Usko predicts that up to 70% of its operating profits will be derived from electronic-commerce-linked activities within the next three to five years. This is a bold statement given that the business, at present, accumulates very little profit from e-commerce,... 

Technology equity fund

By: System Author     21st May 1999 THE private equity division of the Brait group, Brait Capital Partners, has announced a first closing at R250-million in an equity fund which will be making investments in technology and innovation. This fund, known as Braitec, has secured the R250-million of equity commitments from leading South... 

Upcoming trade mission from United Kingdom

By: System Author     21st May 1999 BRITISH industry continues to find South Africa a valuable market. This is illustrated by the fact that the UK’s North East Development Agency (Neda), previously known as the Northern Development Company (NDC), with the support of the UK Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), has organised... 

Large scrap exports must be curbed – call

By: System Author     21st May 1999 The Non-Ferrous Metal (NFM) Works, of Durban, claims to be the largest integrated copper and copper-alloy extrusion mill in South Africa. The company is in its fifty-second year of existence, and has developed a good marketing name for itself for product consistency, which has resulted in ongoing... 

R131-million plant opens in response to growing global demand for polyester

By: System Author     14th May 1999 A new R131-million polyester- processing plant, Coastal Textiles , located in Hammarsdale, Kwazulu-Natal, will start its first commercial production this month. This against the backdrop of Textile Federation figures which indicate that the import of fabrics made from man-made filaments into... 

Learner-aids fast-track skills push

By: System Author     14th May 1999 A way to speed up the learner competency process as outlined by the National Qualifications Framework (NQF) has been developed by the National Productivity Institute (NPI). NPI senior productivity adviser George Chamberlain explains to Engineering News that, although the NQF, through its unit... 

Botswana considering an air force upgrade

By: System Author     14th May 1999 BOTSWANA could be considering a re-equipping programme for its Defence Force Air Arm that could be worth as much as US$100-million. Reliable sources tell Engineering News that Gaborone has made unofficial enquiries about the acquisition of at least six jet trainers to act as lead-in... 

IT strategy endorsed

By: System Author     14th May 1999 The Electronics Industries Federation of South Africa’s (EIF) executive council has added its endorsement to the South African information technology (IT) industry strategy (Saitis) project being co-funded by the governments of South Africa and Canada. Saitis aims to develop a viable... 

Foundation for new development agency

By: System Author     14th May 1999 Why was the TNDT established? Prior to the 1994 elections, non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and community-based organisations (CBOs) played a significant role in South Africa’s transition process by providing the necessary upliftment services the State could not provide. However, after... 

Africa’s first private-equity RDP fund a success

By: System Author     14th May 1999 To date, the South Africa Infrastructure Fund has invested in, or has committed to invest in, seven reconstruction and development programme (RDP)-related projects totalling R250-million, reports MD Philip Chen. The first private-equity infrastructure fund of its kind in Africa, the fund was... 

Business confidence creeps upwards

By: System Author     7th May 1999 Business confidence in South Africa crept upwards in March for the second successive month, Engineering News can today report. The South African Chamber of Business (Sacob) reported that its Business Confidence Index (BCI) had increased by 0,9 index points, following an increase of 1,1 index... 

In-house hydraulics workshop opened

By: System Author     7th May 1999 Hydraulic-equipment importer Powerforce, of Kempton Park, Gauteng, has opened an in-house hydraulics workshop on the premises of a client, Smith Capital Equipment. “Our client is an original-equipment manufacturer (OEM) of drill-rigs employing hydraulics. “At present our client is... 

Emerging enterprises boosted

By: System Author     7th May 1999 The Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE), with The Internet Solution (IS) as strategic partner, is launching an initiative to bring together providers of venture capital with promising emerging companies requiring a cash injection. The JSE’s emerging enterprise zone (EEZ) went live last month,... 

Regional power trade nets R150m for SA

By: System Author     7th May 1999 In an extremely difficult economic climate Eskom’s traders last year managed to make a gross profit of more than R150-million, simply by buying and selling electricity in Africa. The power utility reports that South Africa is the largest producer and consumer of electricity in the... 

Sector is ‘riddled’ with dishonest firms

By: System Author     7th May 1999 The hydraulics industry and its clients must work together to eliminate irregularities that are giving the industry a bad name in South Africa, insists Hydraulic Engineering Repair Services director Eric Page. He tells Engineering News that, especially the hydraulic cylinder industry, in which... 

SA moves to revamp world dumping rules

By: System Author     7th May 1999 The South African government is still mulling over the possibility of taking the US Commerce Department to the World Trade Organisation (WTO) over its decision to impose countervailing duties on Columbus Stainless earlier this year – the ruling has far-reaching implications for a number of... 

New society to boost black engineers

By: System Author     30th April 1999 A NATIONAL society of black engineers has been formed as a platform for black engineers, technicians, artisans and students in an effort to encourage them to join the engineering profession. In an exclusive interview with Engineering News, society president Cyril Gamede says that the idea behind... 

Durban to play host for regional economic summit

By: System Author     30th April 1999 It has been confirmed by the World Economic Forum that the ninth yearly Southern Africa economic summit is to be held between July 4 and 6 in co-operation with the Southern African Development Community (SADC). The theme of the summit, ‘Responsible leadership for stability, action and... 

Civil engineers focus on regional projects

By: System Author     30th April 1999 It seems that hope is finally fading that the now- forgotten reconstruction and development programme would spur enough business for many construction-related companies to live comfortably for the next few years. It also seems that reducing the budget deficit has gained greater gravity on the... 

. . . as economic prospects envisaged to improve this year

By: System Author     30th April 1999 Although still expected to be a difficult year, economic growth is set to improve in 1999, reports Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) manager: economic research and development Jorge Maia. He reports that South Africa has shown considerable resilience as the country started feeling the... 

R350m shopping and entertainment centre for Benoni

By: System Author     30th April 1999 THE R350-million Lakeside Mall, which was due to be opened in Benoni this month, is set to transform the city into a sustainable leisure and entertainment node, and open up opportunities for further rapid economic growth. The development of a shopping, leisure and entertainment centre on the... 

Tax holiday U-turn

By: System Author     30th April 1999 THE South African government has dropped its controversial tax holiday incentive for investors in favour of a lower across-the-board company tax regime and a more ‘sophisticated’ package of support measures, Trade and Industry Minister Alec Erwin has confirmed. In some cases these... 

New lamp plant brightens up Western Cape

By: System Author     30th April 1999 A PLANT manufacturing energy-saving lamps destined for South Africa’s export market has been opened at the Capricorn Technology and Industrial Park in Muizenberg. GB Lamp (SA), formed by a leading European lighting manufacturer in association with the Industrial Development Corporation, is... 

EU, SADC, now for the rest

By: System Author     30th April 1999 South Africa has not lost its appetite for bilateral trade negotiations following its titanic four-year struggle with the European Union (EU). It is also in the process for setting up alliances and strategies in preparation of the next round of multilateral negotiations of the World Trade... 

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