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Thursday, April 29, 2010.
From Creamer Media in Johannesburg, I'm Shannon de Ryhove.
Making headlines today:
South African President Jacob Zuma has officially launched the National Solar Water Heating, or SWH, programme in Winterveldt, north-west of Pretoria, where some 270 SWH units have already been installed.
The government has the ambition of installing one-million solar water heaters across South Africa by 2014, and is aiming at creating the best policy and legislative environment for this to be achieved.
A total of 10 400 units were earmarked to be delivered in the City of Tshwane alone, and residents wishing to take part in the programme would need to register with the municipality if they were willing to participate in the programme.
Local municipalities and the Development Bank of Southern Africa were co-ordinating the programme, with funding coming from a number of sources, such as Eskom's demand side management budget, the proposed National Energy Regulator of South Africa renewable energy feed-in-tariff, and the World Bank's Clean Technology Fund.
South African National Roads Agency Limited Gauteng Freeway Improvement Project leader Alex van Niekerk says that the revenue received from the tolling of 185 kilometres of Gauteng freeways will be ring-fenced.
He says that the money will be used for the repayment of the debt incurred to complete the GFIP, and for maintaining and operating the upgraded road network.
Van Niekerk adds that the estimated 50 cents a kilometre-plus toll fee, as was indicated in 2007, will also be used to pay for the value-added services to become available on the Gauteng road network once tolling kicks in next year April, such as the provision of tow trucks, improved lighting, as well as stand-by medical assistance.
The system also has to finance the roll-out of further phases of the GFIP, which Sanral will initiate in 2013.
Also making headlines:
The N2 Wild Coast toll road gets environmental approval.
ArcelorMittal South Africa reports improved first quarter earnings, and says the second quarter will be better despite a raw materials threat.
Mobile operator MTN confirms a possible Orascom Telecoms deal.
And, Nigeria refineries are all running above 50%.
That's a round up of news making headlines today.