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Botswana markets itself as an attractive business destination

By: Dylan Slater     1st July 2016 Several key factors make doing business in Botswana attractive, according to Botswana high commissioner Zenene Sinombe, who posed several key sentiments of business opportunities during the launch of inter-country relations promotion platform the Africa Matchmaking in May.  

Makhura eyes Gauteng as heart of South Africa’s industrial revival

By: Natasha Odendaal     30th June 2016 Gauteng, and more specifically the City of Ekurhuleni, should be used as a base for South Africa’s reindustrialisation programmes and drive the unfolding fourth industrial revolution, Premier David Makhura has said. Ekurhuleni, South Africa’s oldest industrialised region, remained the... 

Transnet pares back capex as commodity slump impacts demand 

By: Terence Creamer     27th June 2016 State-owned freight logistics group Transnet has pared back its 2016/17 capital expenditure (capex) plan in line with its strategy of “validating” demand ahead of moving ahead with major investments. The rail, ports and pipelines utility expects to invest around R22.8-billion during the 2017... 

Panama opens canal extension amid growth risks, cost battle

By: Reuters     27th June 2016 Panama opened the long-delayed $5.4-billion expansion of its shipping canal amid cheering crowds on Sunday, despite looming economic uncertainty in the shipping industry and a heated battle over billions in cost overruns. At 07:50 (12:50 GMT), the Chinese container ship "Cosco Shipping Panama"... 

PanAust lodges special mining lease application for Frieda River

By: Mariaan Webb     24th June 2016 China-owned PanAust has applied for a special mining lease for the Frieda River copper/gold project, in Papua New Guinea. MD Dr Fred Hess said on Friday that the lodgement of the application represented a crucial milestone in PanAust’s pursuit of organic growth. 

Danish valves producer boosts local production with new factory

By: Simon Sonnekus     24th June 2016 Danish valves producer AVK Valves, which acquired local valves company Premier Valves in 2014, is nearing completion of a brand new valve manufacturing facility located in Alrode in Gauteng. The R100-million investment includes a 1 200 m2 training facility, 4 500 m2 office area and 2 000 m2... 

South Africa’s R&D spend falls short of Brics counterparts

By: Mia Breytenbach     24th June 2016 South Africa spends a relatively low proportion of its gross domestic product (GDP) on research and development (R&D), the National Advisory Council on Innovation (Naci) revealed in its yearly South African Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) Indicators report. “South Africa’s general... 

Transport demand underestimated

By: Victor Moolman     24th June 2016 The number of passengers that could use rail transport has been grossly underestimated, says WSP Parsons|Brinckerhoff Africa (WSP) Transportation and Infrastructure divisional director Vishaal Lutchman. 

We all stand together

By: Riaan de Lange     24th June 2016 "Win or lose, sink or swim; One thing is certain – we'll never give in; Side by side, hand in hand; We all stand together." The above are the opening lyrics of Beatle Paul McCarthy’s 1983 song, aptly titled We All Stand Together. Even though it was considered a "relative success" it has been... 

New Philippine Minister says openpit mining is 'madness'

By: Reuters     23rd June 2016 The incoming Minister in charge of Philippine mining has slammed the use of openpits to extract minerals, describing it as "madness" even to consider the method in the resource-rich country because of the environmental impact. The stance by Regina Lopez, an environmentalist who on Tuesday... 

Commercial property adds R50bn to Gauteng GDP

By: News24Wire      23rd June 2016 It is important to remember that the commercial property sector contributes about R50bn to the gross domestic product (GDP) of Gauteng, Kobus van der Vyver, property development manager at Urban-Econ Development Economists said on Wednesday. The commercial property sector employs almost 350 000... 

Report highlights need for spatial transformation in South African cities

By: Anine Kilian     22nd June 2016 Deputy Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs Minister Andries Nel has stressed that cities must use public resources in the most effective, transparent and accountable manner. Speaking at the launch of the State of South African Cities Report 2016, on Wednesday, he pointed out that local... 

Denham, GreenWish ink renewable-energy partnership

By: Creamer Media Reporter      22nd June 2016 Global energy-focused private equity firm Denham Capital and renewable-energy investment company GreenWish Partners have entered into a strategic partnership to develop, build and finance a 600 MW renewable-energy portfolio across sub-Saharan Africa by 2020. The partnership would unlock the... 

Agricultural technologies to drive growth and development, survey finds

By: Schalk Burger     17th June 2016 The increasing use of agricultural technologies in Africa, as reported in a survey of 25 large agricultural companies, can dramatically improve yields, food security and product quality, as well as provide raw materials for new products in new markets, says PwC Africa Agribusiness industry leader... 

Peruvian mining volumes continue to grow as new president takes helm

By: Simon Rees     15th June 2016 The Peruvian mining industry is expected to spur renewed growth in the country as output grows, prices stabilise and revive, several speakers told a recent Peruvian-Canadian Chamber of Commerce economic outlook seminar. The recent Peruvian election was so close that the winner Pedro Pablo... 

Diamonds are Putin’s best bet to entice wary investors to Russia

By: Bloomberg     15th June 2016 President Vladimir Putin is trying to woo foreign investors into the battered Russian economy by offering a chunk of the world’s biggest miner of diamonds. Russia needs cash to help fill a hole in its budget, the result of a collapse in revenue from plunging oil prices 

South Africa's current account deficit widens in Q1 as exports slump

By: Reuters     14th June 2016 South Africa's current account deficit widened in the first quarter of 2016 as exports slumped despite a recovery in the global prices of commodities and a weaker rand, the central bank said on Tuesday. The current account deficit widened to 5% of gross domestic product in the first quarter from... 

World Bank to loan Kenya $1.1bn for northern region, bank VP says

By: Reuters     14th June 2016 Kenya will get a World Bank loan of $1.1-billion for infrastructure projects in the country's arid northern region, the bank's vice president for Africa said. The loan is the latest in series to Kenya, which amount to $5.5-billion, excluding the new package. 

Australia halfway down mining investment ‘cliff’ – NAB

By: Mariaan Webb     10th June 2016 Australia’s mining investment, which peaked in 2012/13, is forecast to fall further over the next three years and employment will follow suit, as the industry is only halfway down the so-called mining investment cliff, analysis by economists from the National Australia Bank (NAB) has shown. As... 

Free State poised to be helium pioneer as gas developments unfold

By: Mia Breytenbach     10th June 2016 The discovery and proposed exploitation of a natural gas dome containing methane and some of the highest concentrations of helium in the world – South Africa’s first onshore gas find – in the Free State has created much excitement and visions of a local gas hub. “The Free State now has the... 

Free State poised to be helium pioneer as gas developments unfold 

By: Mia Breytenbach     10th June 2016 The discovery and proposed exploitation of a natural gas dome containing methane and some of the highest concentrations of helium in the world – South Africa’s first onshore gas find – in the Free State has created much excitement and visions of a local gas hub. “The Free State now has the... 

DTI to support agroprocessing infrastructure development

By: Anine Kilian     9th June 2016 To stimulate the growth of the agroprocessing sector, the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) is focusing on the development and revitalisation of South Africa’s agroprocessing infrastructure. As part of its Critical Agroprocessing Infrastructure Support Programme, the department was engaging... 

NDP important to tackle unemployment, poverty – Ramaphosa 

By: Anine Kilian     8th June 2016 The Gauteng provincial government has seen that inclusive growth can only be realised if there is a partnership and collaboration between government, labour and business, Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa said on Wednesday. He added that collaboration between all stakeholders had put the province... 

South Africa must reignite economic activity – Gordhan  

By: Anine Kilian     8th June 2016 South Africa needs to re-engineer its economy and focus on its institutions and other strengths, Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan said at the Gauteng Economic Indaba, in Johannesburg, on Tuesday. Reflecting on the state of South Africa’s economy, which contracted by 1.2% in the first quarter of... 

S African economy contracted by 1.2% in Q1 on big mining slump 

By: Terence Creamer     8th June 2016 The South African economy contracted by 1.2% quarter-on-quarter during the first quarter of 2016, dragged lower by the poor performance of mining and agriculture – the economy was also 0.2% weaker year-on-year. The performance represented a sharp turnaround from the 0.4% growth recorded in the... 

Business confidence falls to 32 in Q2 – RMB/BER

By: Anine Kilian     7th June 2016 After remaining unchanged at 36 points in the first quarter, the Rand Merchant Bank (RMB)/ Bureau for Economic Research (BER) Business Confidence Index (BCI) fell to 32 points in the second quarter – the index’s lowest level since the fourth quarter of 2009. The BCI was 11 points lower... 

Kyrgyz woes deepen for Centerra as legal proceedings restrict Kumtor subsidiary

By: Henry Lazenby     6th June 2016 The headwinds facing Canadian miner Centerra Gold in the Kyrgyz Republic seem to be escalating, as State-sponsored legal challenges and restrictive measures imposed by the country’s courts and State authorities hinder the company’s management of its flagship Kumtor mine, the single-largest... 

Moz coal sector under strain as country looks to cooperation with Botswana

By: Keith Campbell     3rd June 2016 It is reported from Mozambique that three of the companies producing coal in that country have stopped, or significantly scaled back, their mining activities. According to the Maputo daily Notícias that are the Indian groups International Coal Ventures Limited (ICVL) and Jindal Africa, and... 

Brazil to see increasing investment, M&A as mineral prices stabilise

By: Henry Lazenby     2nd June 2016 In the wake of stabilising commodity prices led by a gold rally in the first quarter, the Brazilian mining sector is set to play host to increased investment and mergers and acquisitions (M&A) activity. Host to miners such as Yamana Gold and spin-out Brio Gold, Eldorado Gold, Belo Sun Mining,... 

SA on 'almost inevitable' path to junk – economist 

By: News24Wire      30th May 2016 South Africa is on an "almost inevitable" path to junk status without a large enough crisis to jolt it into gear and engender fundamental change in how things are done, Peter Attard Montalto, emerging markets economist at Nomura, said on Friday. "It is a story of the grinding underperformance of... 

Nigerian billionaire pledges to transform agriculture in Africa 

By: African News Agency      27th May 2016 Nigerian billionaire businessman and philanthropist Tony Elumelu on Friday pledged his support to transforming the agricultural sector in Africa, saying entrepreneurs in agriculture should be up-skilled with more focus given to vocational and technical education. Elumelu, chairperson of Heirs... 

New sanctions could cripple reclusive North Korea’s mining sector

By: Ilan Solomons     27th May 2016 New sanctions on North Korea imposed by the United Nations (UN) and the US in March for allegedly undertaking nuclear and ballistic missile tests earlier this year will affect the country’s mineral resources sector. North Korea – officially named the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK)... 

Mozambique seeks to handle commodity price falls and secret debt crisis

By: Keith Campbell     27th May 2016 A Mozambican government minister has called on mining companies working in the country to focus on the future as it battles though the current economic downturn. Justice Minister Isaque Chande urged them to plan and execute structural measures to secure their investments. He was speaking at a... 

Nothing new in latest Ipap iteration

By: Riaan de Lange     27th May 2016 It is said that the English expression 'same old, same old', which means nothing has changed, evolved from the 1950s Japanese expression, samo, samo – but I am certain that this is so. Then there is the English expression 'much of a muchness', which is a great way of saying that two things are so... 

SA’s relative economic decline undermines its diplomatic ambitions 

By: Keith Campbell     27th May 2016 The news, released earlier this month, that Egypt had become Africa’s second largest economy, pushing South Africa into third place, did not create all that much of a stir. There were two good reason for this. The huge shock had been to lose first place to Nigeria, back in 2014, whose economy was... 

Report finds World Heritage sites threatened by climate change

By: David Oliveira     26th May 2016 Climate change is fast becoming one of the most significant risks for World Heritage sites, according to a report released by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (Unesco), the United Nations Environment Programme and the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS).... 

Famous Brands buys Western Cape potato processor

By: Tracy Hancock     26th May 2016 Although the South African potato processing industry is growing rapidly to meet increasingly strong demand fuelled by the brisk growth in food services and the convenience market, JSE-listed Famous Brands says it lagged its peer industries in developed countries, illustrating the growth... 

AMSA insists fair pricing does not equate to no price increases

By: Terence Creamer     25th May 2016 Steel producer ArcelorMittal South Africa (AMSA) dismissed suggestions again on Wednesday that its deal with government to raise steel import protection in return for fairer pricing – as well as jobs and investment guarantees – precluded it from increasing prices. The JSE-listed company was... 

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