Sep 30, 2008
Daily podcast – September 30, 2008Back
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From Creamer Media in Johannesburg, I'm Shannon O'Donnell.
Making headlines today:
General Motors South Africa confirmed on Monday that some 300 workers were recently offered voluntary severance packages and that more were to follow.
Vice president of human resources Chris Thexton said the move was in line with the decline in vehicle sales in South Africa.
He said this had directly impacted on General Motors SA's employment levels in manufacturing and related support areas.
Thexton said the company was also developing a leaner organisation structure to improve its overall competitiveness.
Paper producer Sappi on Monday announced its €750-million acquisition of the European coated graphic paper business of M-real. Sappi CEO Ralph Boëttger said this would "return the European business to acceptable levels of profitability and returns".
The deal would increase Sappi's European graphic paper capacity from 2,6-million tons a year to 4,5-million tons a year. It would also expand the company's wood-free coated product offering and customer base. This would make Sappi the number three player in the coated paper market in Europe.
The transaction included the acquisition of M-real's coated graphic paper business including brands and know-how, as well as four coated graphic paper mills - two in Finland, one in Germany, and one in Switzerland.
Minerals and Energy Ministry spokesperson Sputnik Ratau said on Monday that there was no plan "at the moment" for the creation of a State-owned mining company as the National Union of Mineworkers proposed at South Africa's mining summit.
Ratau said that a plan to create a State-owned mine had not yet been proposed to the Ministry.
He said that "more concrete" comment might be forthcoming from the Ministry should discussion on the issue take place. "But at the moment it's not government policy" to establish and control mines.
NUM president Senzeni Zokwana at the mining summit:
Also making headlines:
Oil falls below $96 on financial turmoil
In political news:
The Gauteng Premier resigns
Edited by: Shannon de Ryhove© Reuse this Comment Guidelines (150 word limit)
Other Intellectual Property Law News
Pharmaceutical companies typically invest substantial amounts of money into research and development. Their research, however, is not only aimed at discovering new active pharmaceutical ingredients (APIs). Instead, some companies make small modifications to existing...
A controversial patent process known as ‘ever-greening’ is being carried out by many pharmaceutical brands, and is preventing medications from being made available as generics, affecting many South Africans who are struggling to keep up with the cost of medication....
It has been over six years since the government began developing the draft policy on intellectual property (IP) that has been the focus of major public controversy following the PharmaGate scandal, which involved a leaked pharmaceutical industry email by Knowledge...
Updated 4 hours ago South Africa signed a nuclear power cooperation deal with Russia on Monday that paves the way for the building of up to 9.6 GW of nuclear power based on Russian technology by 2030, both sides said. The surprise announcement from the sidelines of a International...
Updated 4 hours ago The Mozambican port and rail authorities plan to invest around $3-billion in the coming few years to raise yearly throughput at the Maputo port to between 40-million and 50-million tons by 2020 and to migrate additional cargo from road to rail. Speaking at the...
Updated 6 hours ago A series of unfortunate events led to Johannesburg and surrounding areas experiencing significant water shortages over the past week, City of Johannesburg mayoral committee member for development planning and urban management Roslynn Greeff said at a media briefing...
Recent Research Reports
Road and Rail 2014: A review of South Africa's road and rail infrastructure (PDF report)
Creamer Media’s Road and Rail 2014 report examines South Africa’s road and rail transport system, with particular focus on the size and state of the country’s road and rail network, the funding and maintenance of these respective networks, and the push to move road...
Real Economy Year Book 2014 (PDF Report)
This edition drills down into the performance and outlook for a variety of sectors, including automotive, construction, electricity, transport, steel, water, coal, gold, iron-ore and platinum.
Real Economy Insight: Automotive 2014 (PDF Report)
This four-page brief covers key developments in the automotive industry over the past 12 months, including an overview of South Africa’s automotive market, trade figures, production and the policies influencing the sector.
Real Economy Insight: Construction 2014 (PDF Report)
This five-page brief covers key developments in the construction industry over the past 12 months. It provides an overview of the sector and includes details of employment in the sector, infrastructure and municipal spending, as well as insight into companies’...
Real Economy Insight: Electricity 2014 (PDF Report)
This five-page brief covers key developments in the electricity industry over the past 12 months, including details of State-owned power utility Eskom’s generation activities, funding and tariffs, independent power producers and prospects for the sector.
Real Economy Insight: Road and Rail 2014 (PDF Report)
This six-page brief covers key developments in the road and rail industries over the past 12 months, including details of South Africa’s road and rail network and prospects for both sectors.
This Week's Magazine
While Ekurhuleni-based transformer manufacturer Reliable Transformers currently designs, manufactures and tests its products according to the SANS 780 specifications for distribution transformers and other applicable transformer specifications, it is working towards...
Global endpoint security solutions company Kaspersky Lab has introduced new measures to prevent cyber criminals from accessing sensitive data, alongside its malware-signature and heuristic device analysis detection methods. Threats to mobile devices have increased...
To ensure uptake and a positive impact, Wireless Fidelity (Wi-Fi) networks in cities must be provided at schools, community centres and commercial centres to enable citizens and government to access information that will improve access to and delivery of services....
Eco-estate Monaghan Farm, located near Lanseria airport, north-west of Johannesburg, has taken a new approach to modern living and sustainability with its 517 ha development, dedicated to farm living.
Forklift and lift-truck distributor Goscor Lift Hi-Reach launched the Genie SX-180, the tallest self-propelled super boom in Africa, in Johannesburg last month. “As the official distributor of the well-known Genie range of equipment in Southern Africa, we are pleased...
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