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SAAO, DST launch optical telescope that will serve as 'the eye' for the MeerKAT

By: Marleny Arnoldi     25th May 2018 The South African Astronomical Observatory (SAAO) and the Department of Science and Technology (DST) on Friday inaugurated the MeerLICHT optical telescope, in Sutherland, in the Northern Cape, to function as "the eye" of the MeerKAT radio array – the country’s precursor to the Square Kilometre... 

SAAO, DST launch optical telescope that will serve as 'the eye' for the MeerKAT
Photo by Marleny Arnoldi
The MeerLICHT optical telescope

Mahindra, AIH start local bakkie assembly in Durban

By: Irma Venter     25th May 2018 Mahindra & Mahindra South Africa (MMSA) has initiated contract assembly of its Mahindra and Bolero bakkies in KwaZulu-Natal. Production volume will be 2 500 a year in a single shift, but can be increased to 4 000 units a year. Production is from semi-knockdown kits, imported from India through... 

Mahindra, AIH start local bakkie assembly in Durban

Size of government under review

By: Creamer Media Reporter      25th May 2018 President Cyril Ramaphosa revealed on Friday that a review of the size and structure of the National Executive and government departments was under way, with a technical task team having been established to undertake the process. In his reply to a national assembly question by the Democratic... 

Size of government under review
President Cyril Ramaphosa

Stronger rand cuts Hulamin's interim earnings

By: Anine Kilian     25th May 2018 JSE-listed Hulamin expects to report a 55% decrease in earnings a share and headline earnings a share to 25c for the six months ended June 30. The company said in a statement on Friday that its profits had been impacted on by the performance of the rand against the dollar and the euro, as... 

Aton increases interest in M&R to 43.70%, lifts offer price to R17 a share

By: Simone Liedtke     25th May 2018 German-owned Aton has acquired a further 18.25-million shares in Murray & Roberts (M&R). Following the settlement of these shares’ acquisition, Aton will hold 194.35-million shares in M&R, representing about 43.70% of the entire issued share capital. 

Esor postpones release of FY18 results

By: Simone Liedtke     25th May 2018 Civil engineering and construction group Esor has postponed the release of its annual financial statements for the year ended February 28 to June 29. The group on Friday said it still needed to confirm various claims and provisions on certain material contracts and the related impact on revenue... 

Should desalination play a bigger role in South Africa’s water future?

By: Natasha Odendaal     25th May 2018 South Africa’s prolonged drought conditions and arid environment are increasingly highlighting the country’s existing water infrastructure vulnerabilities and demand that alternative and non-conventional sources of water beyond the traditional surface and groundwater resources be explored.... 

Should desalination play a bigger role in South Africa’s water future?

SAA, partner airlines assist stranded SA Express passengers

By: Anine Kilian     25th May 2018 South African Airways (SAA) and its partner airlines Mango and SA Airlink have put in place replacement capacity to support South African (SA) Express passengers. This comes after the South African Civil Aviation Authority (SACAA) on Thursday suspended SA Express’ flights after an audit uncovered... 

Chinese government lends support to Musina-Makhado SEZ

By: Anine Kilian     25th May 2018 Government is making good progress in the establishment of the ferroalloy industrial park at the Limpopo-based Musina-Makhado Special Economic Zone (SEZ), as a result of the support of the Chinese government, Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) SEZ deputy director-general Sipho Zikode said on... 

NNR sets the record straight on application fees paid by Eskom for NISL

By: Anine Kilian     25th May 2018 The National Nuclear Regulator (NNR) says the payment of application fees by any applicant to the NNR does not automatically secure a nuclear authorisation. This follows reports by media earlier this week that State-owned Eskom's payment of nuclear installation site licence (NISL) application... 

African airlines switching to more economical regional airliners

By: Rebecca Campbell     25th May 2018 Regional airliner manufacturers are seeing a major adjustment in African airline markets as airlines "right-size" their fleets, adopting more economical, regional types (especially regional jets). This was made clear at the twenty-seventh African Aviation Summit (Air Finance Africa) on Thursday... 

Paramount’s KPE JV secures new armoured vehicle order in Kazakhstan

By: Simone Liedtke     25th May 2018 Defence and aerospace company Paramount Group’s joint venture in Kazakhstan, Kazakhstan Paramount Engineering (KPE), has secured a new and substantial order from the government of Kazakhstan for its advanced 4 x 4 mine-protected armoured personnel carrier, the Arlan. This follows the recent... 

Paramount’s KPE JV secures new armoured vehicle order in Kazakhstan
Kazakhstan Paramount Engineering'S advanced 4 x 4 mine-protected armoured personnel carrier, the Arlan

Volkswagen SA announces two new appointments

By: Anine Kilian     25th May 2018 Mark Handley has been appointed head of Volkswagen South Africa Commercial Vehicles and Ryan Searle Volkswagen South Africa National sales manager. Handley played a key role in bringing about a significant improvement in Volkswagen's Dealer Satisfaction Index, helping to make the Volkswagen... 

Transport Decarbonisation Alliance launched

By: Simone Liedtke     Updated 7 hours ago The Transport Decarbonisation Alliance (TDA), a coalition aiming to catalyse the accelerated decarbonisation of the transport sector, was launched earlier this week in Leipzig, Germany, as part of the International Transport Forum (ITF). Rail transport company Alstom and partner companies, cities... 

Transport Decarbonisation Alliance launched

Uber adds new safety features for drivers

By: News24Wire      25th May 2018 Ride-hailing service Uber hopes the launch of its latest safety feature will further improve the safety of drivers and passengers. It announced on Thursday that it was partnering with Aura, a security technology service that would allow Uber drivers to be connected to the closest private security... 

Botswana court backs regulator's push for lower mobile call rates

By: Reuters     25th May 2018 Botswana's telecoms regulator said on Friday its order that mobile phone companies cut fees they charge rivals to use their network by 41% has been endorsed by a local court. The ruling comes after Mascom, the country's biggest telecoms company, filed a court application last July seeking to have... 

Global crude steel production increases 4.1% y/y in April

By: Simone Liedtke     25th May 2018 Global crude steel production, as reported by the 64 countries reporting to the World Steel Association (worldsteel), was 148.3-million tonnes – a 4.1% increase compared with April 2017. China’s crude steel production for April was 76.7-million tonnes, an increase of 4.8% compared with April 2017. 

Engineering News iPhone and Android Apps available for free download

By: Creamer Media Reporter      25th May 2018 Creamer Media’s readers continue to be part of the mobile revolution.  Over 20% of Creamer Media’s online readers view the websites on their mobile devices. To cater for this growing mobile readership Creamer Media offers an Engineering News Online app for iPhone and Android users.  These apps... 

Engineering News iPhone and Android Apps available for free download

LafargeHolcim to cut 200 jobs as Paris, Zurich offices axed

By: Reuters     25th May 2018 LafargeHolcim will close its corporate offices in Paris and Zurich, eliminating 200 jobs as part of a cost-cutting drive, the world's largest cement maker said on Friday. The Franco-Swiss company confirmed the long-mooted closure of its Paris HQ, which was reported by Reuters on Thursday. 

NPA applies for forfeiture order in McKinsey, Eskom matter

By: News24Wire      25th May 2018 The National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) has confirmed that it filed papers in the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria on Wednesday in an application for a forfeiture order against global consultancy McKinsey. Fin24 reported earlier this year that Eskom approached the court in a bid to recover... 

Weir Minerals shines at Seifsa awards

By: Anine Kilian     24th May 2018 Mine dewatering equipment supplier Weir Minerals won the 2018 Most Transformed Company of the Year Award, as well as the Environment Stewardship Award, at the Steel and Engineering Industries Federation of Southern Africa (Seifsa) Awards for Excellence, on Thursday night. Engineering support... 

African Open Skies plan putting cart before horse – Nigerian airlines

By: Rebecca Campbell     24th May 2018 Nigerian airlines are not enthusiastic about any rapid implementation of the Single African Air Traffic Market (SAATM). This was made clear at the 27th Annual African Aviation Summit (Air Finance Africa) by national industry association Airline Operators of Nigeria CEO Noggie Meggasin on... 

Avian flu still affecting agricultural cycles – Quantum Foods

By: Simone Liedtke     24th May 2018 The first six months of the current financial year proved how quickly agricultural cycles can change, says diversified feeds and poultry business Quantum Foods. This is evidenced through two main factors influencing the macroenvironment during this period, ended March 31. 

Probe into influence peddling to start hearings in August

By: Reuters     24th May 2018 An inquiry into allegations of influence peddling revolving around former president Jacob Zuma and businessman friends of his will begin formal public hearings in August and could take two years or more, the head of the commission said on Thursday. The allegations around Zuma, forced from office... 

Nigeria's Bodo community claims win over Shell after latest UK court ruling

By: Reuters     24th May 2018 A British judge ruled on Thursday that Nigeria's Bodo community, which has been involved in a protracted legal battle with Shell over the clean-up of two 2008 oil spills, should retain the option of litigation for another year. Lawyers for Bodo had accused Shell of trying to kill off the legal... 

Consortium to study feasibility of turning waste biomass into aviation fuel

By: Anine Kilian     24th May 2018 A consortium comprising enterprise development specialist Fetola, the World Wide Fund for Nature South Africa (WWF-SA) and SkyNRG is launching the Waste to Wing project to determine the feasibility of using waste biomass to produce sustainable aviation fuel in South Africa.  The consortium will... 

465 TWh of renewable energy sourced by companies in 2017 – Irena

By: Simone Liedtke     24th May 2018 Companies in 75 countries actively sourced 465 TWh of renewable energy in 2017, an amount close to the overall electricity demand of France, a new report by the International Renewable Energy Agency (Irena) states. With the continued decline in the costs of renewables, the report suggests that... 

SARB keeps repurchase rate at 6.5%

By: African News Agency      24th May 2018 South Africa's Reserve Bank (SARB) kept its benchmark repurchase rate at which it lends to commercial banks unchanged at 6.5% on Thursday, saying the stance was appropriate given the forecast inflation trajectory and the current state of the economy. The move follows a 25 basis point decrease at... 

SARB keeps repurchase rate at 6.5%

Eskom business-model review aimed at lowering utility’s risk to fiscus

By: Terence Creamer     24th May 2018 Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan has confirmed that the business model of power utility Eskom is up for discussion as government seeks to reduce the fiscal risk currently posed by utility and to reposition the State-owned enterprise (SoE) for future sustainability. On his eighty-sixth... 

Eskom business-model review aimed at lowering utility’s risk to fiscus
Photo by Creamer Media
Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan

South Africa authorities halt flights of State-run SA Express over safety

By: Reuters     24th May 2018 South Africa's Civil Aviation Authority (SACAA) said on Thursday it had suspended all flights of state-run airline SA Express over safety concerns. The decision comes after Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan said on Thursday that he had appointed an "intervention team" to help at the... 

Aspen opens R1bn high containment facility in Port Elizabeth 

24th May 2018 Pharmaceutical company Aspen officially opened its new high containment facility, valued at about R1-billion, earlier this month. Simone Liedtke tells us more. 

Aspen opens R1bn high containment facility in Port Elizabeth

Enforcement unit to protect Metrorail commuters and infrastructure on the way

By: African News Agency      24th May 2018 The formation of an enforcement unit to prioritise the safety and security of Metrorail commuters and infrastructure moved a step closer this week, with the signing of a memorandum of agreement between the City of Cape Town, along with the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA) and the... 

Northam ups funding capacity as stockpile monetisation ensues

By: Martin Creamer     24th May 2018 Platinum mining company Northam has increased its funding capacity to tide it over a capital intensive development period. A new R1-billion two-year unsecured revolving credit facility to April 2020 is augmenting a previous R2-billion unsecured revolving credit facility to November 2021, taking... 

Northam ups funding capacity as stockpile monetisation ensues
Photo by Creamer Media
Northam Platinum CEO Paul Dunne

Despite somewhat dismal FY18 performance, Famous Brands remains cautiously optimistic

By: Simone Liedtke     24th May 2018 Despite a somewhat dismal performance by some of its operations in the financial year ended February 28, branded food services franchisor Famous Brands remains cautiously optimistic about the South African and African landscape, while feeling reserved about its UK operations. This follows... 

Despite somewhat dismal FY18 performance, Famous Brands remains cautiously optimistic

Troubled economy creating some new opportunities, says Afrimat boss

By: Irma Venter     24th May 2018 “The fact that ArcelorMittal, Aveng, Group Five and Basil Read today have a smaller combined market capitalisation than a ‘little’ quarry company such as Afrimat, shows you that the economy is in trouble,” says Afrimat CEO Andries van Heerden. “Not long ago any one of them was twenty times our... 

 Troubled economy creating some new opportunities, says Afrimat boss

Tiger Brands H1 earnings hit by South Africa cold meat recall costs

By: Reuters     24th May 2018 South Africa's Tiger Brands reported on Thursday a 16% drop in half-year earnings, weighed down by R365-million ($29.24-million) in costs due to a recall of cold meat products in response to a listeria outbreak. The country's biggest food producer suspended production at its Polokwane, Germiston,... 

Gordhan appoints new Denel, Transnet, SA Express boards; Hadebe appointed Eskom CEO

By: Anine Kilian     24th May 2018 Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan has appointed Phakamani Hadebe as Eskom CEO. Hadebe has been acting CEO of the power utility since January. 

Gordhan appoints new Denel, Transnet, SA Express boards; Hadebe appointed Eskom CEO
Photo by Dylan Slater
Eskom CEO Phakamani Hadebe

US auto import probe borders on provocation – Germany's DIHK

By: Reuters     24th May 2018 The US decision to launch a national security investigation into car imports marks a further low point in business ties with Europe and could lead to costs of 6 billion euros, Germany's DIHK Chambers of Industries and Commerce said on Thursday. "To cite aspects of national security as... 

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