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May 28, 2009

Daily podcast – May 28, 2009

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Thursday, May 28, 2009.

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

Making headlines today:

On Wednesday, Africa's largest steel producer, ArcelorMittal South Africa, confirmed that it intended raising prices for the first time in nine months as of July 1. The company said it would roll over its May prices into June, but gave notice to its customers that it would increase prices on both long- and flat-steel products as from July.

Spokesperson Sven Lunsche confirmed that flat-steel prices would be increased by between 4 and 5%. Long-steel prices would rise by between 5 and 6%.

Lunsche said that this was the first increase in most steel product prices since September last year. Between September and May the average prices of South African steel had declined by over 60%.

The July increase appears to be premised on a view that the South African currency won't strengthen beyond current levels and that there'll be some upward momentum in international steel prices.

Chrysler LLC, parent company of Chrysler South Africa, has submitted a 448-million-dollar proposal to the US Department of Energy to rapidly bring electric vehicles, or EVs, and plug-in hybrid-electric vehicles, or PHEVs, to market.

Chrysler has applied for two initiatives established by the DOE - the Electric Drive Vehicle Battery and Component Manufacturing Initiative, and the Transportation Electrification Initiative.

Both are designed to speed up the development, demonstration, evaluation and manufacturing of EVs and PHEVs.

The programmes represent a 50/50 cost-share opportunity, with 224-million-dollars to come from Chrysler and its partners, and a matching 224-million-dollars from the DOE.

Also making headlines:

Standard & Poor's will make a new Eskom ratings statement soon.
Higher sugar prices boost Illovo's earnings.
London-listed LonZim still sees strong investment potential in Zimbabwe.
And, trade union Solidarity declares a dispute with employers in the chemical sector.

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


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