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Jul 21, 2008

Daily podcast – July 21, 2008

July 21 2008
© Reuse this This podcast is brought to you by Mercedes Benz Commercial, the right partner.

Monday, July twenty-one, 2008.

From Creamer Media in Johannesburg, I'm Shannon O'Donnell.

Making headlines today:

South Africa's National Treasury unveiled the much-anticipated details of its 60-billion rand capital injection into embattled State power utility Eskom on Friday, confirming earlier reports by Engineering News Online that the transfer would be ‘front loaded'.

Further, Finance Minister Trevor Manuel hinted to possible additional support beyond the initial loans, which was also in line with a statement made last Thursday by Public Enterprises Minister Alec Erwin.

"In addition to the deeply subordinated loan, government will consider providing guarantees to enable Eskom to access funding otherwise not available," National Treasury said in a statement.

Southern Africa's biggest building material's supplier, AfriSam, said at the weekend that it had selected the Public Investment Corporation (PIC) as its second-biggest shareholder, because the State-owned financing institution was the most supportive of its black-controlled status.

AfriSam deputy chairperson Mofasi Lekota said that the AfriSam Consortium, which bought 85% of the cement producer for 16,4-billion rand last year, had spoken to a number of local and international financiers, but the PIC had been the most supportive.

Of the 6-billion rand that the State-owned investor was injecting into AfriSam, 4,3-billion rand would earn it a 20% stake in the company, while the rest was in the form of a loan, the terms of which Lekota said had not yet been finalised.

(audio clip)

Repair work has begun at Equinox Minerals' Lumwana copper project, in Zambia, after a fire on July 7 damaged a 20-MVA transformer and adjacent 11-kV substation at the process plant facility.

The first concentrate was originally scheduled to be produced this month at Lumwana, but the company now expects that the engineering, procurement and construction contractor, a joint venture between Bateman and Ausenco, will only have the project ready for hand over in December, Equinox said on Friday.
The timeline estimate was based on current lead times for the replacement, installation and testing of the new equipment.

Assessments had been conducted by independent experts, insurance loss adjusters and engineers from the Ausenco Bateman JV, to identify equipment that would require replacement, and the ordering of the necessary replacement items had begun.

Also making headlines:

Renault-Nissan alliance invests 1-billion rand in South Africa
Cement demand still strong despite building decline says Afrisam
Reliance Communications' shares set to gain as MTN talks end
Details of 50-million dollar loan expected soon says Pamodzi
Camec plans to spin off Mozambique and South African coal assets into new company
And, rising oil lifts gold and platinum near 11-week low

In political news:

Robert Mugabe threatens to seize foreign firms over sanctions
Zimbabwe's MDC holds out on signing memorandum
New Darfur mediator says mission is not impossible
And, trade ministers begin make-or-break World Trade Organisation talks

That's a round up of news making headlines today. For more on these and other stories, visit, and


Edited by: Shannon de Ryhove
Creamer Media Senior Deputy Editor Polity & Multimedia
© Reuse this Comment Guidelines (150 word limit)
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