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Former Audi CEO Stadler freed from jail in diesel emissions case

By: Bloomberg     30th October 2018 German judges allowed former Audi CEO Rupert Stadler to leave the jail where he’s been since June, while warning that there’s still strong evidence against him in a criminal probe over diesel-emission cheating. The 55-year-old was told not to contact any potential witnesses in the fraud... 

Ramaphosa declares end to 'investment strike' and unveils R290bn in commitments  

By: Terence Creamer     26th October 2018 President Cyril Ramaphosa declared an end to South Africa's proverbial 'investment strike', when he unveiled firm investment commitments of R290-billion across a diverse range of sectors, from mining and energy to infrastructure and manufacturing, at a well attended and vibrant investment... 

Buying only SA-made vehicles could boost GDP by R37bn, says Wits study  

By: Irma Venter     23rd October 2018 New research by the University of the Witwatersrand (Wits) shows that a government policy of buying only locally produced cars, bakkies, buses and trucks at national and provincial government level could, through various multiplier effects, increase South Africa’s gross domestic product (GDP) by... 

South Africa poised to adopt plan to boost local car industry suppliers 

By: Reuters     18th October 2018 South Africa is likely to adopt new plans for the country's car industry in December which aim to increase the local content of assembled cars to 60% by 2035 from around 38% now, a cabinet minister said on Thursday. The new plan, which will come into effect in 2021, seeks to provide stability for... 

Mercedes-Benz rolls out fuel-cell SUV to tackle tech hurdles

By: Bloomberg     10th October 2018 Mercedes-Benz will soon start handing over its latest fuel-cell electric car to fleet customers to keep a toe-hold in a promising technology that’s been hampered by the difficulties of storing and refueling hydrogen. The Mercedes-Benz GLC F-Cell model combines a fuel cell with a battery that can... 

Volkswagen is near hiring top banks for truck unit IPO

By: Bloomberg     9th October 2018 Volkswagen is close to hiring banks and advisers to work on an initial public offering (IPO) for its heavy-truck division, according to people with knowledge of the matter. Citigroup, Deutsche Bank, Goldman Sachs Group and JPMorgan Chase & Co are likely to win mandates as global coordinators for... 

Germany pushes VW, BMW for trade-ins to defuse diesel crisis

By: Bloomberg     2nd October 2018 Germany’s ruling coalition pushed Volkswagen, Daimler and BMW to offer trade-in rebates for older diesel vehicles to avoid driving bans in urban areas and defuse a crisis that’s sullying the country’s reputation as an automotive leader. The plan wasreed by Chancellor Angela Merkel’s government... 

Jaguar Land Rover to cut output at UK car plant after warnings on Brexit, diesel

By: Reuters     17th September 2018 Britain's biggest carmaker Jaguar Land Rover said it will go down to a three-day week at its Castle Bromwich plant in central England just days after its boss warned about the impact of Brexit and diesel policy. The Castle Bromwich facility will operate a three-day week from October until the... 

Congo plans to build special economic zone for cobalt users

By: Bloomberg     12th September 2018 The Democratic Republic of Congo plans to establish special economic zones for companies that manufacture goods from the country’s minerals, President Joseph Kabila said. “There is a need to create special economic zones for the final users of Congolese natural resources,” Kabila said at a... 

China's Tianqi Lithium seeks up to $1bn in Hong Kong listing - sources

By: Reuters     20th August 2018 China's Tianqi Lithium Corp is looking to raise up to $1-billion in its Hong Kong stock market flotation, despite this year's fall in lithium prices, two people close to the deal told Reuters. The company, the world's second largest lithium producer by sales, on Friday filed plans for Hong... 

Currency shocks knock platinum to ten-year lows

By: Reuters     17th August 2018 Platinum prices tumbled to ten-year lows as the collapse of Turkey's lira rippled through markets and weakened the currency of top producer South Africa, underlining persistent oversupply of the autocatalyst metal. Platinum has been caught in a broad sell-off as investors rush to the safety of... 

VW, Audi, Nissan provide best purchase, service experience, says Ipsos

By: Irma Venter     2nd August 2018 Volkswagen, Audi and Nissan last year delivered the best vehicle buying and servicing experience in South Africa, says the Ipsos 2017 Competitive Customer Experience survey. The research report, released on Thursday, is based on telephonic interviews with more than 20 000 South African customers... 

Growth potential positive – Naamsa

By: Halima Frost     27th July 2018 Owing to the right policies, interventions and goodwill by all automotive industry stakeholders, National Association of Automobile Manufacturers of South Africa (Naamsa) director Nico Vermeulen says the industry’s growth potential remains positive. “Currently, the automotive industry is the... 

VW to temporarily park cars due to new emissions testing bottlenecks

By: Reuters     23rd July 2018 Volkswagen is renting parking spaces from August to stockpile vehicles which cannot be sold due to bottlenecks caused by new engine emissions tests, a spokesperson said on Sunday. Carmakers are rushing to get models through a new Worldwide Harmonised Light Vehicle Test Procedure (WLTP) tests on a... 

Kenya to lower age limit on used-vehicle imports to promote local assembly

By: John Muchira     20th July 2018 Kenya has decided to reduce the age limit of used vehicles allowed into the country to promote local assemblers, who are struggling to increase sale of new vehicles in a market choking with imports. Industrialisation Cabinet Secretary Adan Mohamed said that Kenya is on the verge of reducing the... 

Bridgestone South Africa’s manufacturing plant showcases rubber innovation

By: Marleny Arnoldi     19th July 2018 Tyre manufacturer Bridgestone South Africa on Wednesday hosted a media tour of its 186 027 m2 manufacturing facility in Brits, North West, to showcase how its technology has evolved from the 1950s to date. Bridgestone manufactures passenger radial, light truck radial, truck and bus radial, and... 

On-The-Air (29/06/2018) 

By: Martin Creamer     29th June 2018 Good news for the economy is that Swiss-based mining giant Glencore is taking steps to boost its investments in South Africa. An Australian-funded company is moving at break-neck speed to reopen a rich zinc and copper mine in South Africa’s Northern Cape province. South Africa has supplied all... 

Ongoing fuel cell developments kindle hope for platinum demand 

By: Martin Creamer     26th June 2018 Ongoing hydrogen fuel cell developments across the globe are kindling hope for an eventual significant increase in platinum demand. This month alone, Hyundai Auto Canada took part in the official opening of Canada's first retail hydrogen fuelling station operated by Shell and Hydrogen Technology... 

There is hope for South Africa’s manufacturing sector – October

By: Anine Kilian     20th June 2018 South Africa has the potential to revive, remould and expand its manufacturing sector through partnerships between industry and government, Department of Trade and Industry deputy director general Lionel October said on Wednesday. Addressing delegates at the Manufacturing Indaba, in Sandton, he... 

VW, Ford confirm talks on possible commercial vehicle tie-up

By: Reuters     20th June 2018 Volkswagen and Ford Motor Co are talking about jointly developing and building a range of commercial vehicles including vans, the companies confirmed on Tuesday. A Reuters story earlier on Tuesday said VW and Ford were discussing joint production of vans. 

Inaugural Factory of the Year competition to include future-proofing benchmark

By: Terence Creamer     19th June 2018 Global management consulting firm AT Kearney has officially launched the South African version of its internationally recognised ‘Factory of the Year’ competition and is urging domestic manufacturers to enter ahead of the August 20 deadline for submissions. AT Kearney partner and Africa MD Theo... 

Volkswagen returns to Alexandra to give the gift of motion

18th June 2018 School children, Community Policing Forum and health workers are beneficiaries of 300 Blue Bikes donated to community in Alexandra As the maker of people's cars', Volkswagen puts people at the heart of what we do, by playing a vital role in driving people forward. "Under the banner of 'Volkswagen... 

Head of VW's Audi arrested in Germany over diesel scandal

By: Reuters     18th June 2018 German authorities arrested the head of Volkswagen’s luxury arm Audi on Monday, the most senior company official so far to be detained over the carmaker’s emissions test cheating scandal. Munich prosecutors, who earlier this month widened their probe into Audi, said Rupert Stadler was being held... 

Industry 4.0 to add benefits across the entire value chain

By: Schalk Burger     14th June 2018 The nascent industrial revolution happening across the world, termed Industry 4.0, is helping to improve the entire value chain through the digitalisation of all processes and the integration and improvement of the interdependent processes, says industrial systems multinational Siemens Digital... 

Electric vehicle sales to reach 1.6m this year, battery prices tumbling

By: Irma Venter     1st June 2018 Electric vehicle (EV) sales are on pace to reach more than 1.6-million units this year, up from just a few hundred thousand in 2014. According to Bloomberg New Energy Finance’s (BNEF’s) Electric Vehicle Outlook 2018, there are a number of reasons for this increase, including the fact that... 

Some inroads made after ten years of the Industrial Policy Action Plan - Davies

By: Kim Cloete     15th May 2018 Ramping up production in the automotive sector, resuscitating the ailing tooling industry and boosting the clothing, textiles, leather and footwear industries are among successes the government has listed in its review of ten years of the Industrial Policy Action Plan (Ipap). Despite a... 

Auto exports earned South Africa R165bn in 2017

By: Irma Venter     4th May 2018 Total earnings from South African automotive exports reached R164.9-billion in 2017, comprising 13.9% of South Africa’s total export earnings. This number is down from the record R171.1-billion achieved in 2016, at 15.6% of total export earnings. Total automotive revenue in the South African... 

PSA, Romano merge to create largest corporate signage company in sub-Saharan Africa

By: Marleny Arnoldi     5th April 2018 Corporate signage manufacturer Premier Sayina Africa (PSA) and signage and solar solutions company Romano Signs have merged to create PSA Romano – the largest corporate signage company in sub-Saharan Africa.  

Goal driven and competitive South African manufacturing can up the stakes in global competitiveness

28th March 2018 Manufacturing Indaba, the foremost Manufacturing event in sub-Saharan Africa and with its strategic partners, the dti and the Manufacturing Circle has grown exponentially, and now in its 5th year, is considered to be the leading manufacturing business platform. Manufacturing Indaba has relocated... 

Glencore faces off against labour group on Congo mine conditions

By: Bloomberg     26th March 2018 Commodity giant Glencore defended working conditions at its mines in the Democratic Republic of Congo after an international labour federation said its employees are poorly treated and underpaid. The spat with Geneva-based IndustriALL, a global union federation that says it represents more than... 

LME rethinks cobalt contract for electric vehicle sector

By: Reuters     9th March 2018 The London Metal Exchange has abandoned plans for a cobalt sulphate contract for the electric vehicle battery supply chain because pricing for the chemical has historically been based on the metal it is derived from, cobalt industry sources said. The exchange is instead looking at offering a... 

German ruling likely blessing in disguise for platinum - RBPlat 

By: Martin Creamer     6th March 2018 The German Federal Court ruling on diesel car emissions, which could cost transgressors eight-billion euros in fines a year, is seen as a likely blessing in disguise for platinum, Royal Bafokeng Platinum (RBPlat) CEO Steve Phiri said on Tuesday. The global backlash against diesel-engine cars,... 

Glencore's talks to sell cobalt to Chinese firm falter on price

By: Reuters     6th March 2018 Glencore is in talks to sell around a quarter of its cobalt output in a one-year deal to Chinese firm GEM, but price is a sticking point as Glencore and other major producers are now able to exert more influence in negotiations, sources said. Cobalt has increasingly come under the spotlight over... 

Diesel cars can be banned from German cities, court rules

By: Reuters     27th February 2018 German cities can ban the most heavily polluting diesel cars from their streets, a court ruled on Tuesday, a move likely to be mirrored in other parts of Europe and to force automakers to pay to improve exhaust systems or switch to cleaner vehicles. There has been a global backlash against... 

SUVs push global new-car sales up by 2.4%, EV sales up 78%

By: Irma Venter     21st February 2018 The global new-car and light commercial vehicle (LCV) market grew by 2.4% in 2017, to 86.05-million units, compared with 2016, according to data released by UK automotive business intelligence group JATO Dynamics. “The automotive market performed well in 2017, with established economies... 

Apple is said to negotiate buying cobalt direct from miners

By: Bloomberg     21st February 2018 Apple is in talks to buy long-term supplies of cobalt directly from miners for the first time, according to people familiar with the matter, seeking to ensure it will have enough of the key battery ingredient amid industry fears of a shortage driven by the electric vehicle boom. The iPhone maker... 

Deadly mines linked to child labour thrive in rush for batteries

By: Bloomberg     20th February 2018 The appetite for electric cars is driving a boom in small-scale cobalt production in the Democratic Republic of Congo, where some mines have been found to be dangerous and employ child labour. Production from so-called artisanal mines probably rose by at least half last year, according to the... 

US seeks to boost output of 35 minerals, reduce import reliance

By: Reuters     17th February 2018 The United States should boost domestic production of 35 critical minerals including uranium, cobalt and lithium, to reduce its reliance on foreign suppliers, the Interior Department said on Friday. Aluminium and potash are also on the draft list of 35 critical materials used in basic... 

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