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New Denel board faces tough turnaround task as financial pressure mounts

By: Rebecca Campbell     20th April 2018 Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan recently announced the completely new, high-powered, Board to turn-around beleaguered State-owned defence industrial group Denel. Technically, it is currently an interim Board, he explained, because it had not yet been approved by the Cabinet. He... 

Gemfields faces lawsuit alleging rights abuses at ruby mine

By: Bloomberg     16th April 2018 More than 100 Mozambicans filed a case in London alleging “serious human rights abuses” at Gemfields’ ruby mine in the Southern African nation, according to their lawyers. Leigh Day, the London-based law company, alleged its clients suffered abuses at the hands of security forces at the Montepuez... 

Court ruling on ‘once empowered, always empowered’ principle brings certainty to the mining industry

By: Simone Liedtke     6th April 2018 The High Court’s judgment earlier this week in support of the ‘once empowered, always empowered’ principle will provide clarity for the mining industry, which will contribute to greater investor confidence, says law firm Webber Wentzel. The High Court on Wednesday ruled that mining right holders... 

Proper dredging, correct dredge depths critical

By: Jessica Oosthuizen     30th March 2018 It is imperative that harbours are properly dredged and channels are kept open to facilitate smooth port operations, says global law firm Norton Rose Fulbright director and transport head Andrew Robinson. “Dredging is a much more complicated process than many people realise and the fact that a... 

Court rules that Optimum BRP removal application is urgent

By: Marleny Arnoldi     22nd March 2018 Law firm Kruger & Co Attorneys says the North Gauteng High Court has ruled that its application to remove the current business rescue practitioners (BRPs) for the Optimum coal mine, is urgent.  

South Africa joins global AI community

By: Marleny Arnoldi     20th March 2018 Global nonprofit organisation City.AI has welcomed South Africa as a new member and is inviting local artificial intelligence (AI) practitioners to attend its first Cape Town City.AI event, which will be held on March 27.  

Beleaguered Jonas Makwakwa quits Sars

By: News24Wire      14th March 2018 The South African Revenue Service (Sars) announced on Wednesday that its chief officer for business and individual tax, Jonas Makwakwa, has resigned with immediate effect. Sars commissioner Tom Moyane made the announcement at an urgent briefing. 

Transnet is trying to root out Gupta-related corruption – Gama

By: African News Agency      14th March 2018 Transnet is trying to get to the bottom of how the company was committed to contracts that saw an agency linked to the Gupta family earn lavish fees on its infrastructure contracts, CEO Siyabonga Gama told MPs on Wednesday. "It has given Transnet a very bad name and a very bad reputation, so that... 

Nigerian mining’s GDP contribution seen increasing sixfold to 3%, cautious optimism takes hold in South Africa

By: Mia Breytenbach     23rd February 2018 With investors continuously scouring for new opportunities worldwide and countries scrutinised for their investment attractiveness and moni- tored in terms of economic growth, new light has been cast on the re-emerging and growing Nigerian mining sector, while South Africa’s mining industry... 

Altron says independent investigation finds no DTT collusion

By: Natasha Odendaal     22nd February 2018 An Allied Electronics- (Altron-) commissioned independent investigation has cleared the group’s subsidiaries of alleged collusion in the 2015 set-top box (STB) tender for government’s digital terrestrial television (DTT) project. Altech UEC had failed in its bid for the DTT tender in 2014;... 

Transnet board cannot revoke its responsibility – Brown

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     20th February 2018 Public Enterprises Minister Lynne Brown on Tuesday instructed State-owned Transnet to report alleged irregularities identified in an investigative report by law firm Werksmans Attorneys on the R54-billion procurement of 1 064 locomotives in 2014 to law enforcement authorities. The parastatal last... 

Framework continues to form sector foundation

By: Simone Liedtke     16th February 2018 The economic opportunity represented by the continent’s need for energy makes the African energy industry an attractive prospect for foreign investment, says law firm Norton Rose Fulbright director Lizel Oberholzer. 

Gemfields transparent, proactive in rebutting rights allegations

By: Martin Creamer     12th February 2018 Coloured gemstones company Gemfields has been transparently proactive in rebutting claims of human rights abuses in Mozambique, where it mines rubies. "We've voluntarily elected to issue this statement," Gemfields, headed by CEO Sean Gilbertson, commented in a release on Monday about UK-based law... 

Tanzania lays down the law on local participation in mining sector

By: Anine Kilian     7th February 2018 The mining industry in Tanzania is adopting a wait-and-see approach following the government’s sweeping changes to mining regulations, aimed, in part, at ensuring sovereign ownership of the country’s natural resources. Over the past 12 to 18 months – and as recently as last month – there has been... 

Southern African countries, Botswana to play larger role in coal export market

By: Mia Breytenbach     2nd February 2018 Botswana, South Africa and Mozambique are beginning to play a much bigger role in the Southern African domestic and export coal market, says Botswana Mineral Resources, Green Technology and Energy Security Minister Sadique Kebonang. Speaking at the IHS Markit South African Coal Export Conference,... 

MEIBC changes welcome, but should take employer into consideration

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     23rd January 2018 Although the Metal and Engineering Industries Bargaining Council (MEIBC) main agreement negotiation process, that took place from June to August last year, was riddled with technical issues and procedural hurdles, the extension to all nonparty employers and employees falling within the scope of... 

Lundin secures a $300m debt facility to ensure Fruta del Norte’s development

By: Samantha Herbst     23rd January 2018 Canadian project developer Lundin Gold has secured a $300-million debt facility through commitments from five senior lenders – namely ING Capital, Société Générale, Caterpillar Financial Services Corporation, the Bank of Nova Scotia and KfW IPEX-Bank – for the development and construction of the... 

Domestic IPOs by African issuers increase for a second year

By: Creamer Media Reporter      19th January 2018 While 2017 registered fewer domestic listings in Africa, the capital raised in domestic listings by African issuers increased by 19.5% year-on-year to $1.4-billion, the second consecutive year of growth. The latest research by global law firm Baker McKenzie shows that there were seven domestic... 

Former Land Bank CEO convicted of fraud

By: African News Agency      19th January 2018 The specialised commercial crimes court in Pretoria has convicted former Land Bank CEO Philemon Radichaba Mohlahlane and three others of defrauding the bank of at least R6 million in a case dating back to 2012. The Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation, commonly known as the Hawks, said... 

Miners to focus on M&A activity, sustainability in year ahead

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     18th December 2017 Nearly two-thirds, or 63%, of mining and metals respondents to the latest EY Capital Confidence Barometer (CCB) say they intend to pursue deals in the next 12 months, demonstrating a higher inclination to transact than the average across all industries (56%). The findings support the EY third... 

M&A markets remain resilient despite geopolitical risks

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     14th December 2017 Despite the growth in global geopolitical risks, merger and acquisition (M&A) markets continued to prove highly resilient, with a 19% year-on-year increase recorded in the number of deals valued at between $1-billion and $5-billion, international law firm Allen & Overy’s (A&O’s) latest M&A... 

Blockchain set to change transactions, information flow and business processes

By: Schalk Burger     8th December 2017 Trust is the underlying factor supporting financial systems – from the value of currency and financial transactions to public spending. Similarly, trust underpins almost all information transfers, and money is a medium that allows people to ‘communicate’ value throughout an economy, says... 

Blockchain set to change transactions, information flow and business processes

By: Schalk Burger     8th December 2017 Trust is the underlying factor supporting financial systems – from the value of currency and financial transactions to public spending. Similarly, trust underpins almost all information transfers, and money is a medium that allows people to communicate value throughout an economy, says financial... 

General public taking heed of environmental law

By: Simone Liedtke     1st December 2017 The general public is becoming more familiar with the tools that are available under the Constitution and environmental law to protect what is perceived as the unacceptable environmental or social impacts of businesses, says law firm Norton Rose Fulbright environment lawyer Matthew Thornton-Dibb. 

Kingsgate facing board spill

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     16th November 2017 Embattled gold miner Kingsgate Consolidated is facing a board spill after shareholder Metal Tiger requested a general meeting to remove a number of the company’s directors. Metal Tiger is hoping for shareholder support to remove Ross Smyth-Kirk, Sharon Skeggs and Peter Warren as directors of... 

Parliament wants report clearing Sars number two

By: African News Agency      6th November 2017 Parliament’s standing committee on finance on Monday said it had sent official letters to South African Revenue Service (Sars) commissioner Tom Moyane and Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba asking for a copy of a disciplinary inquiry report which cleared a senior Sars official. Jonas Makwakwa, widely... 

Guptas inflated Oakbay price through trading by Singapore firm

By: Bloomberg     2nd November 2017 The Gupta family inflated the share price of a company it controlled on its Johannesburg Stock Exchange debut by lending money to a Singapore firm to be used to trade the equities. That came ahead of plans to raise funds for a uranium mine. The Guptas, who are embroiled in a corruption scandal... 

Glencore Congo deals are said to be part of latest offshore leak

By: Bloomberg     30th October 2017 Glencore could face renewed scrutiny of its business in the Democratic Republic of Congo after confidential information was released in the data breach of a major offshore law firm, according to people familiar with the matter. The documents relate to Glencore’s acquisition of Katanga Mining,... 

Rio Tinto faces class action suit over Mozambique coal

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     24th October 2017 US law firm Hagens Berman has launched a class action lawsuit against mining major Rio Tinto over the miner’s 2011 investment in the Mozambique coal assets. The lawsuit claims that Rio and certain of its former executives violated the Securities Exchange Act, and made false and misleading... 

Miner defends Western Cape phosphate project, highlights its importance

By: Ilan Solomons     19th October 2017 Emerging miner Kropz has warned that the West Coast Environmental Protection Association’s (WCEPA’s) application to have the water-use license (WUL) for Kropz’s Elandsfontein phosphate mine, near Saldanha Bay, in the Western Cape, suspended, would, if successful, cause “irreversible environmental... 

Open immigration regime central to S Africa’s growth

By: Robyn Wilkinson     13th October 2017 Countries seeking to promote economic growth and job creation tend to adopt policies that create flexible and open immigration regimes, contrasting with South Africa’s adoption of restrictive immigration laws, which when coupled with bureaucratic inefficiency creates a barrier to the entry of... 

This junior miner surged five-fold on mine asset sale

By: Bloomberg     6th October 2017 West High Yield Resources, a little-known Canadian miner, surged as much as 1 000% after it said it sold a magnesium deposit to a US buyer for $750-million – or 46 times the company’s market value. West High Yield, which has no revenue, jumped five-fold in Toronto trading to close at C$2 after... 

SAP Provides Update on Investigation into South Africa Business

     26th September 2017 SAP SE today announced that it will provide an update on the investigation into allegations of wrongdoing in its South African business during the last week of October 2017.   The company initiated an investigation spearheaded by international law firm Baker McKenzie on July 12, 2017. At the same... 

Climate change is an ‘extreme green’ hoax

By: Kelvin Kemm     8th September 2017 I read yet another of those ‘we are all headed for doom’ newspaper articles about climate change in a national business newspaper. To make matters worse, it was written by a fellow who is the director of the environmental law division at a law firm. The article was peppered with the word ‘may',... 

Private equity increasing in Africa – report

By: Anine Kilian     6th September 2017 Private equity activity in Africa has increased significantly in the last 30 years, a report commissioned by global law firm Baker McKenzie and The Economist Corporate Network shows. The report, entitled ‘A growth engine: Trends and outcomes of private equity in Africa’, stipulates that the... 

Anglo, South Africa set to pay to end miners' lung-damage battle

By: Bloomberg     1st September 2017 Former workers who contracted deadly lung diseases in South African gold mines decades ago may soon finally receive compensation. Six large mining companies including  Anglo American Plc have set aside about $390-million to settle a class-action lawsuit brought by victims. At the same time, a... 

Beech advises mining firms to prepare for implementation of Mining Charter 3

By: Dylan Slater     22nd August 2017 The implementation of the third iteration of the Mining Charter, or Mining Charter 3, in some form or another, is inevitable and mining companies should start the process of bringing their operations in line with the regulations set out in the charter, law firm Hogan Lovells mining head and... 

Biofuels company launches franchise solution

     18th August 2017 Cape Town-based biofuel company Biogreen Diesel will start franchising its ‘Biodiesel & Research model’, to aid in the expansion of the industry and simultaneously increase awareness of biofuels in the region. The company, having made the announcement in June on its website, says it felt it had... 

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