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Thursday, December 4, 2008.
From Creamer Media in Johannesburg, I'm Shannon O'Donnell.
Making headlines today:
Telecoms operator Telkom was likely to launch a "converged" fixed-mobile bundle into the South African market within weeks of the listing of cellular giant Vodacom. This listing is still scheduled to take place within the first quarter of 2009.
The partially State-owned telecoms utility recently reached agreement with Vodafone, of the UK, whereby 15% of Telkom's 50% stake in Vodacom would be sold to Vodafone for 22,5-billion rand. The 35% balance will be unbundled to Telkom shareholders.
Fifty per cent of the proceeds would flow back to shareholders in the form of a special dividend. Telkom would retain the 10,9-billion rand balance for its repositioning strategy.
Confidence in South Africa's building industry plunged in the fourth quarter. This was as weak demand for property threatened profitability.
The First National Bank Building Confidence Index fell to 40 points in the fourth quarter, falling to below 50 for the first time since 2001, from 52 in the third quarter.
FNB chief economist Cees Bruggemans said that for various role-players, from architects to retail building material merchants, confidence was down.
He said the underlying reason is the environment of higher interest rates, affordability problems and, aside of any supply problems that may exist in the building trade, these factors are steadily pushing confidence levels lower.
Also making headlines:
The Southern African Customs Union will over the weekend to try and reach a consensus on the economic partnership agreement with the European Union.
Nissan South Africa may retrench workers.
First shipment of Gautrain rail cars arrives in South Africa.
And, Eskom completes repairs to the 900 MW unit at its nuclear power station.
That's a round up of news making headlines today. For more on these and other stories please visit engineeringnews.co.za.