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Economy News

CompComm invites public to comment on information exchange guidelines

By: Anine Kilian     Updated 1 hour 24 minutes ago The Competition Commission is inviting the public to comment on draft guidelines regarding the exchange of information between competing companies. The guidelines are aimed at identifying what constitutes a permissible and impermissible exchange of information under the Competition Act, as well... 

Reserve Bank cuts repo rate, denies political pressure

By: Reuters     Updated 2 hours 52 minutes ago South Africa's central bank unexpectedly cut its benchmark lending rate for the first time in five years on Thursday, citing weak growth and easing inflation, and denied any pressure from recent political attacks against its mandate. South Africa's main anti-graft watchdog recommended last month... 

Reserve Bank cuts repo rate, denies political pressure
Photo by Reuters
Lesetja Kganyago

Eskom ‘galloping’ towards financial distress, says Num

By: African News Agency      Updated 6 hours ago The National Union of Mineworkers (Num) on Thursday said Eskom was heading for financial distress despite the power utility’s assurances this week that it was on firm financial footing. Eskom released its 2016/17 financial results on Wednesday in which it said earnings before interest, taxes,... 

Eskom ‘galloping’ towards financial distress, says Num

Eskom’s reputational platform is burning 

By: Terence Creamer     Updated 6 hours ago Arguably one of the most telling statements made at this week’s Eskom results presentation was the public assurance given by interim CEO Johnny Dladla that “no decision would, in future, be taken outside the executive committee meetings. “Whatever decision is taken, it will be a decision that is... 

Eskom’s reputational platform is burning
Second Take: Eskom’s reputational platform is burning

Africa's major central banks embarking on policy easing cycle ride

By: Reuters     20th July 2017 Africa's major central banks are entering an easing cycle as they try to stimulate growth after months of drought, austerity drives and confidence issues across the continent, a Reuters poll found on Thursday. Much of southern and eastern Africa is still recovering after an El Niño-related... 

State capture casts long shadow over Eskom’s results  

By: Terence Creamer     19th July 2017 South Africa’s worst kept corporate secret was confirmed on Wednesday, when Eskom reported a sharp fall in after-tax profits to R888-million in 2017, from over R5-billion in the previous financial year. However, the results were overshadowed by serious allegations of corruption and... 

State capture casts long shadow over Eskom’s results
Interim Eskom CEO Johnny Dladla on his first 21 days and his main priorities for the embattled utility. Camera Work & Editing: Darlene Creamer. Recorded: 19.7.2017

Brown acknowledges cost competitiveness of renewables as she calls for deal that goes ‘beyond price’ 

By: Terence Creamer     18th July 2017 Public Enterprises Minister Lynne Brown, who in June criticised the high cost of renewable energy, offered a tacit acknowledgement on Tuesday of the growing competitiveness of solar and wind, while calling for a long-term deal with the renewable-energy sector to avoid job losses in the energy... 

Brown acknowledges cost competitiveness of renewables as she calls for deal that goes ‘beyond price’

I will vote with my conscience – Gordhan  

By: Sashnee Moodley     18th July 2017 Former Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan said on Tuesday that he will be voting with his conscience during a vote of no confidence against President Jacob Zuma on August 8. Speaking to media at the Conference for the Future of South Africa, organised by civil society organisations Save South Africa... 

I will vote with my conscience – Gordhan
Pravin Gordhan discusses corruption, Mandela Day & civil society.

Temporary mobile transformer helps Loeriesfontein connect to the grid

By: Samantha Herbst     18th July 2017 The Northern Cape-based Loeriesfontein Wind Farm has been making use of a mobile transformer to allow for an early connection to the grid for the commissioning of the turbines – a temporary solution until the wind farm can connect to the Helios substation, which is the permanent grid connection.... 

Temporary mobile transformer helps Loeriesfontein connect to the grid

Civil society unites to combat State capture  

By: Sane Dhlamini     18th July 2017 Representatives from over 130 civil society organisations gathered on Tuesday at the Conference for the Future of South Africa, in Johannesburg, to publicly unite South Africa against corruption, State capture and the abuse of power by President Jacob Zuma’s government. The conference, organised... 

Civil society unites to combat State capture
Sipho Pityana discusses the Conference for the Future of SA. (Camera & editing: Nicholas Boyd)

EOH's shares fall 10% over graft allegations

By: Reuters     18th July 2017 Shares in South Africa's largest technology group EOH Holdings fell nearly 10% to more than two-year lows on Tuesday after allegations of corruption, which the firm has denied. An opinion piece in Business Report newspaper on Monday accused EOH of being involved in corruption based on a report by... 

Airbus DS test flies its new UAV in South Africa

By: Keith Campbell     18th July 2017 South Africa’s Overberg Test Range was the site of the first flight of the Airbus Defence and Space (Airbus DS) Sagitta jet-powered unmanned air vehicle (UAV) demonstrator, the European company announced on Tuesday. The aircraft, a flying-wing design, flew autonomously over the test range (which... 

Airbus DS test flies its new UAV in South Africa
Photo by Airbus DS
The Sagitta UAV in flight at Overberg

‘Gigaba stifling good governance’ – Popo Molefe 

By: African News Agency      18th July 2017 Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA) board chairperson Popo Molefe on Tuesday accused Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba of withholding a National Treasury nominee to his board and stifling corporate governance at the state enterprise. Molefe, who was reinstated as board chairman following a... 

‘Gigaba stifling good governance’ – Popo Molefe

Zuma should step aside – Gordhan

By: News24Wire      18th July 2017 President Jacob Zuma should step aside and allow someone to lead the country and reset the course to fulfil the kind of aspirations that Nelson Mandela and his generation had for South Africa, former finance minister Pravin Gordhan said on Tuesday. Gordhan told talk show host Eusebius McKaiser in... 

Zuma should step aside – Gordhan
Photo by Reuters
Former Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan

SAA will publish outcomes of its internal report into its losses – board

By: Keith Campbell     18th July 2017 The board of directors of State-owned national flag carrier South African Airways (SAA) issued an assurance on Monday that “it does not condone nor will it cover up any acts of impropriety at SAA”. This followed the publication of a series of stories in the media about the airline, which the... 

SAA will publish outcomes of its internal report into its losses – board
Photo by Duane Daws/Creamer Media
An Airbus A340-600 of SAA

Competition Commission launches inquiry into public transport sector

By: Anine Kilian     17th July 2017 The Competition Commission has launched a market inquiry into the public passenger transport sector following numerous complaints relating to public transport in the country.    The ‘Public Passenger Transport Market Inquiry’ was recently published in the Government Gazette and the commission is... 

Outa lays treason charges against Muthambi 

By: African News Agency      17th July 2017 The Organisation Undoing Tax Abuse (Outa) on Monday announced it had laid treason charges against former Communications Minister Faith Muthambi. Based on information contained in the #GuptaEmails showing Muthambi had purportedly sent confidential cabinet documents, including a Presidential... 

Outa lays treason charges against Muthambi
Former Communications Minister Faith Muthambi

DTI supporting black emerging filmmakers through R100m in incentives

By: Anine Kilian     17th July 2017 The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) has, through its South African Emerging Black Filmmakers Incentive, committed R100-million to supporting emerging black filmmakers by the end of March 2018.   The DTI has partnered with the Industrial Development Cooperation, the National Film and Video... 

Black-led energy investment firm encouraged by moves to restore IPP policy certainty 

By: Terence Creamer     17th July 2017 The head of a black-managed and led JSE-listed energy investment company says he is encouraged by the framework outlined by Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba for re-establishing policy certainty for the electricity sector and for independent power producers (IPPs). IPPs have been left in limbo since... 

Black-led energy investment firm encouraged by moves to restore IPP policy certainty
Hulisani CEO Marubini Raphulu

Water and sanitation department DG given notice of intention to suspend him – DWS

By: African News Agency      17th July 2017 Water and sanitation department director general Dan Mashitisho has been given a notice of intention to suspend, subject to him providing reasons as to why he should not be suspended, the ministry said on Sunday. Water and Sanitation Minister Nomvula Mokonyane had “requested the DG to provide... 

Eskom refutes cash-crunch reports

By: Reuters     17th July 2017 South African power producer Eskom is not facing liquidity challenges, the utility said on Sunday, after media reports alleging it would be unable to pay salaries by November. Eskom, which produces nearly all of the electricity in Africa's most industrialised economy and exports energy to... 

South African Brian Joffe's Long4Life buys a beauty salon chain

By: Reuters     14th July 2017 Brian Joffe, one of South Africa's most respected dealmakers, will buy a beauty salon chain, his new company Long4Life said on Friday, marking a return to the acquisition trail for the billionaire founder of industrial conglomerate Bidvest Group. The cash-and-share deal would be the second... 

South African Brian Joffe's Long4Life buys a beauty salon chain
Long4Life CEO Brian Joffe

Public Protector’s Absa report ‘reckless’ – Reserve Bank Governor 

By: African News Agency      14th July 2017 A report by Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane into a government loan to Absa shows her lack of competency and understanding of both the Constitution and economy, Reserve Bank governor Lesetja Kganyago charges in an affidavit filed in the high court in Pretoria, made public on Friday. In the... 

Public Protector’s Absa report ‘reckless’ – Reserve Bank Governor
Photo by Reuters
Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane

Two chemicals companies fined for cartel conduct

By: Anine Kilian     14th July 2017 Two companies involved in the manufacture and supply of key chemical input materials used to make detergents, cosmetics and toiletries have agreed to pay fines to the Competition Commission after admitting to price fixing and dividing markets.   Investchem and Akulu Marchon are manufacturers and... 

National Treasury’s action plan may not be enough – economists

By: Natasha Odendaal     14th July 2017 Industry is not viewing Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba’s new 14-point plan as likely to stimulate the growth South Africa desperately needs. Rather, economists are viewing it as a group of administrative measures that will only move to stabilise the battered economy. Released on Thursday,... 

National Treasury’s action plan may not be enough – economists
Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba

Outa welcomes Myeni’s SAA departure  

By: Sane Dhlamini     14th July 2017 The Organisation Undoing Tax Abuse (Outa) on Friday welcomed Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba’s announcement that South African Airways (SAA) chairperson Dudu Myeni would not serve another term on the board.  Her term expires on August 31 and a new board chairperson will be appointed at the SAA... 

Outa welcomes Myeni’s SAA departure
Photo by Duane Daws
SAA Chair Dudu Myeni

Conformity assessment key to navigating disruption in the power sector

By: Robyn Wilkinson     14th July 2017 The power industry is a global community that has developed a strong habit of sharing best practice and discussing joint problems – making events like POWER-GEN & DistribuTECH Africa invaluable for advancing the sector in times of disruption, says testing, inspection and certification services... 

Conformity assessment key to navigating disruption in the power sector
Photo by Reuters
UP TO STANDARD Conformity assessment involves ensuring clients’ power assets are developed, constructed and operated in line with all applicable regulations

Decentralise, find optimal mix

     14th July 2017 Decentralisation of generation and determining the optimal energy mix for available resources and needs are crucial for addressing Africa’s energy challenges, say industry experts on the advisory board of the upcoming POWER-GEN & DistribuTECH Africa conference and exhibition in Johannesburg. 

Decentralise, find  optimal mix
Photo by Duane Daws
NIGEL BLACKABY The nuclear question, optimal use of renewables and funding for independent power producer programmes are key issues for discussion

Energy storage solutions to be leveraged in South Africa

By: Robyn Wilkinson     14th July 2017 The decreasing cost of energy storage solutions presents many opportunities for South Africa to manage the key issue of localised peak load power generation more efficiently, says green energy solutions provider Freedom Won cofounder and director Antony English. 

Energy storage solutions to be leveraged in South Africa
ANTONY ENGLISH AND LIZETTE KRIEL The co-founders of Freedom Won are confident that demand for energy storage will continue to grow in South Africa in the long-term

Event to facilitate meaningful and relevant debate

By: Robyn Wilkinson     14th July 2017 The POWER-GEN & DistribuTECH Africa advisory board has gone to great lengths to ensure that this year’s conference programme is tailored to meaningfully address the issues most relevant to Africa’s power generation sector and supported by a showcase of suppliers who can practically assist in... 

Event to facilitate meaningful  and relevant debate
Photo by Bloomberg
PLOTTING FUTURE PATHS Creative thinking is needed to devise a representative power-generation portfolio that leverages all the options available

Farmers still face headwinds despite return to growth

By: David Oliveira     14th July 2017 Despite the recent positive news from Statistics South Africa (Stats SA) indicating that the agriculture sector had increased 22.2% in the first quarter of 2017 and that a record maize harvest is on the horizon for this year, the recent sovereign downgrades by credit agencies and news that the... 

Fast, affordable power key for oil and gas producers

     14th July 2017 Given the financial constraints facing the oil and gas industry, the ability to rapidly access affordable power generation that does not tie up capital could be what is needed to jump-start exploration and development activities across Africa, says energy solutions provider APR Energy regional... 

Fast, affordable power key for oil and gas producers
FLEXIBLE POWER SOURCE Fast-track power plants are scalable, which allows generating capacity to easily expand as a project moves from exploration to production

Focus shifts to power distribution

     14th July 2017 Global professional services provider Accenture resources MD and associate director Ken Robinson – who will be speaking at this year’s POWER-GEN & DistribuTECH Africa – says South Africa’s generation crisis is largely under control, but that power supply challenges loom in distribution. 

Focus shifts to  power distribution
FOCUS ON DISTRIBUTION The backlog in municipal power infrastructure maintenance is growing and could result in more blackouts, especially in rural areas and small towns

Power crucial to Africa’s economic development

By: Robyn Wilkinson     14th July 2017 With strong correlations between electric capacity and economic development, access to reliable and cost-effective power is crucial to enabling nations to harness the productive capabilities of their people and obtain meaningful growth, says engineering, procurement and construction company Black... 

Power crucial to Africa’s economic development
WEBB MEKO POWER-GEN & DistribuTECH Africa is the ideal platform to shift the conversations surrounding new power technology into meaningful action

South Africa’s defence industry faces serious challenges but also sees future opportunities

By: Keith Campbell     14th July 2017 South Africa’s defence and aerospace industry forms a major part of the country’s high-technology manufacturing and services sector. Moreover, the high-level skills it has developed and is maintaining are benefitting other sectors of the economy as well. According to the South African Aerospace,... 

South Africa’s defence industry faces serious challenges but also sees future opportunities

Gigaba tables economy action plan, reopens mining charter engagement 

By: Natasha Odendaal     13th July 2017 Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba on Thursday unveiled a series of aggressive planned interventions and action steps to stimulate economic recovery after South Africa’s fall into recession in the first quarter. His address revealed two main desired outcomes – dodge another downgrade and reignite... 

Gigaba tables economy action plan, reopens mining charter engagement
Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba

Desalination could be necessary to mitigate S Africa’s water woes 

By: Anine Kilian     13th July 2017 With freshwater resources in South Africa almost fully utilised and heavily stressed – especially in the Western Cape, where drought conditions have left dam levels at 25% – water scarcity conditions are set to increase in the country, especially in winter months, according to engineering... 

Desalination could be necessary to mitigate S Africa’s water woes
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