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Hard-hit diamond jewellery sector mulls postpandemic recovery strategies

By: Mamaili Mamaila     5th June 2020 The unforeseen global health crisis triggered by the Covid-19 pandemic has had dire economic repercussions, to which South Africa is not immune. 

Hard-hit diamond jewellery sector mulls postpandemic recovery strategies

Accelerated renewables roll-out ‘one of the few substantial recovery opportunities’ open to South Africa

By: Terence Creamer     4th June 2020 The South African government is being urged to accelerate the implementation of its renewable-energy-heavy Integrated Resource Plan 2019 (IRP 2019) as part of the country’s post-Covid-19 economic recovery package. Meridian Economics MD Dr Grové Steyn, who is currently modelling the economic... 

Accelerated renewables roll-out ‘one of the few substantial recovery opportunities’ open to South Africa

Engineering News & Mining Weekly e-magazine now available

4th June 2020 For the duration of South Africa’s Covid-19 lockdown period, Creamer Media is providing free digital access to our flagship Engineering News & Mining Weekly news magazine. Click now to read our latest edition. 

Engineering News & Mining Weekly e-magazine now available

Placing green stimulus at heart of South Africa’s postpandemic recovery would yield big co-benefits 

By: Terence Creamer     4th June 2020 South Africa’s medium-term response to the Covid-19 pandemic provides a unique opportunity to reset the country’s unsustainable development pathway by fostering a “green recovery” that improves electricity and water security and creates jobs, Trade & Industrial Policy Strategies senior economist... 

Placing green stimulus at heart of South Africa’s postpandemic recovery would yield big co-benefits
Gaylor Montmasson-Clair

WEF, Prince of Wales launch Great Reset initiative to drive global change  

By: Simone Liedtke     4th June 2020 With the Covid-19 pandemic having exposed various existing societal fault lines and laid bare a fundamental lack of social cohesion, fairness, inclusion and equality, the World Economic Forum (WEF) on June 3 announced the launch of its Great Reset initiative. Drawing from the vision and vast... 

Agriculture to grow this year, but long-term market impact remains uncertain

By: Marleny Arnoldi     4th June 2020 Although South Africa has a resilient and robust agricultural system, Covid-19 has exposed some fault lines and vulnerabilities in certain value chains that need to be addressed, industry role-players say. Financial services provider Nedbank on June 4 hosted an agriculture webinar with experts... 

Agriculture to grow this year, but long-term market impact remains uncertain

Swedish clean energy tech ready for full scale commercial launch in South Africa

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     4th June 2020 A year ago, the first PWR BLOK from the Swedish clean technology company Swedish Stirling was commissioned at ferrochrome producer Afarak's Mogale site, in South Africa. The company is now ready to launch on a larger commercial scale in the country. 

Barloworld, Tongaat contractual dispute to take longer to resolve

By: Marleny Arnoldi     4th June 2020 JSE-listed industrial group Barloworld has advised that it has not reached consensus with fellow-listed Tongaat Hulett about an independent accountant that is supposed evaluate the terms of a sale and purchase agreement between the companies. Barloworld in May raised a concern about Tongaat’s... 

Foundation welcomes government initiatives to bolster project pipeline

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     4th June 2020 Thought leadership organisation, the Construction Management Foundation, has noted the announcement by the Presidency that it will host an inaugural Sustainable Infrastructure Development Symposium on June 23. This symposium will unveil an infrastructure project pipeline from six priority sectors. 

Oceana records solid interim results

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     4th June 2020 Fishing company Oceana Group delivered a resilient operating performance for the six months ended March 31. Group revenue was up 2% to R3.63-billion, primarily owing to a 3% increase in revenue by its African operations, an increase in cold storage occupancy levels and the favourable impact of... 

Oceana records solid interim results
Imraan Soomra

Solidarity issues letter of demand to stop pension funds going to Eskom

By: Donna Slater     4th June 2020 With a letter of demand addressed to the Government Employees Pension Fund (GEPF) and the Public Investment Corporation (PIC), labour union Solidarity instituted legal steps to stop the exchange of Eskom debt for Eskom shares, on June 4. In doing so, Solidarity demands that plans by the PIC to... 

Survey confirms smokers buying more black market cigarettes amid ban

By: Donna Slater     4th June 2020 A survey conducted by gig technology company M4Jam has found that half of all South African smokers have been able to source new cigarette supplies during lockdown, and 95% are paying elevated prices for what are mostly black-market products. M4Jam states that a demographically representative... 

WHO reiterates importance of lockdowns to ‘slow the spread’ of Covid-19

By: Simone Liedtke     4th June 2020 Lockdowns, in response to the Covid-19 pandemic, have been “a challenging balance” to maintain, says World Health Organisation (WHO) Africa regional director Dr Matshidiso Moeti. She notes, however, that while the economic impacts thereof have been severe, “an out of control spread of the... 

Airbus A400M transport achieves essential paratrooping certification

By: Rebecca Campbell     4th June 2020 Airbus Defence and Space, part of the Europe-based global giant Airbus aerospace group, announced on June 3 that it had finally completed the full industrial development of the paratroop deployment capability of its A400M military airlifter. The final step, successfully concluded last month, was... 

Worldsteel says demand will contract by 6.4% this year owing to Covid-19

By: Simone Liedtke     4th June 2020 The World Steel Association (worldsteel) expects global steel demand to contract by 6.4% this year, as a result of the Covid-19 crisis. In its Short Range Outlook (SRO) for 2020 and 2021, released on June 4, the industry body states that steel demand is, however, expected to increase by 3.8%... 

April saw almost total collapse in air travel demand, but early signs of recovery appearing

By: Rebecca Campbell     4th June 2020 The International Air Transport Association (Iata) has reported that it has detected signs of a recovery in air passenger demand, following a gigantic collapse in April. Air passenger demand during April was 94.3% lower than in April 2019, a fall never before seen in this statistical series since... 

Oil slips with Opec+ discord and US demand data sowing doubt

By: Bloomberg     4th June 2020 Oil retreated from a three-month high as Opec+ unity was threatened by a long-running feud over complying with production cutbacks, while U.S. data cast doubt on the strength of the demand recovery. Futures in New York fell around 2% to below $37/bl after closing at the highest since March 6.... 

Green energy's role in the post-Covid-19 global economic recovery

By: Creamer Media Reporter      Updated 14 minutes ago Creamer Media's Chanel de Bruyn speaks to Creamer Media Editor Terence Creamer about governments and international organisations' calls to integrate clean energy into their post-Covid-19 economic recovery plans. 

Green energy's role in the post-Covid-19 global economic recovery

South Africa extends drought state of disaster by a month

By: Bloomberg     Updated 2 hours 37 minutes ago South Africa has extended the national state of disaster it declared for a drought that’s been going on for more than seven years in some parts of the country. The state of disaster that was initially announced for three months on March 4 has been extended to July 4, Cooperative Governance and... 

South Africa extends drought state of disaster by a month
Cogta Minister Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma

Rolls-Royce to help develop nuclear fusion energy in the UK

By: Rebecca Campbell     4th June 2020 UK-based industrial technology group Rolls-Royce has been awarded a four-year full-service engineering design framework contract by the UK Atomic Energy Authority (UKAEA). The contract means that Rolls-Royce will help deliver multi-disciplinary projects for the UKAEA. The company will provide... 

Covid, diesel, substitution nudging platinum into sweeter spot 

By: Martin Creamer     4th June 2020 Depressed platinum is being nudged into a sweeter spot by a combination of the Covid-19 pandemic, new focus on diesel vehicles, trickling substitution of platinum for palladium and worsening supply constraints, Mining Weekly can report. Covid-19 funding demands are delaying the planned rollout of... 

Well positioned to weather storm – Standard Bank

By: Martin Creamer     4th June 2020 The Standard Bank is well positioned to weather the Covid-19 storm and remains determined to emerge from this crisis as a stronger Africa-focused financial services group, Standard Bank Group FD Dr Arno Daehnke said on Thursday. The capital and liquidity levels of Africa’s biggest lender by... 

Well positioned to weather storm – Standard Bank
Standard Bank building.

Brazilian aerospace group Embraer reports net loss for the first quarter of the year

By: Rebecca Campbell     4th June 2020 Brazilian major aerospace group Embraer, the world’s number one manufacturer of commercial jets with up to 150 seats, and the world’s number three commercial jet manufacturer, after Airbus and Boeing (in alphabetical order), has reported a net loss attributable to its shareholders of $292-million... 

Brazilian aerospace group Embraer reports net loss for the first quarter of the year
Photo by St Helena Tourism Authority
An Embraer E190 airliner of South African operator Airlink

Scopa wants public works to stop paying for 'absolute mess' of a fence at Beitbridge border

By: News24Wire      4th June 2020   Parliament's public finance watchdog supports the directive from law enforcement agencies that the Department of Public Works pays no further money on the "absolute mess" of a fence at the Beitbridge border until all investigations are completed. 

South Africa's rand slips from 11-week high

By: Reuters     4th June 2020 South Africa's rand eased against the US dollar in early trade on Thursday, after a strong rally in the previous session that was fuelled by hopes of a global economic rebound. At 0642 GMT, the rand traded at 17.0200 per dollar, 0.49% weaker than its close on Wednesday, when it climbed to an... 

South Africa's rand slips from 11-week high

Government, labour working together on new airline plan

By: Bloomberg     4th June 2020 The Department of Public Enterprises and labour unions are working together on a business model for a new national carrier that will replace the embattled South African Airways. The new airline will be funded through a variety of options such as strategic equity partners, funders and the sale of... 

Eskom informs lawmakers it will not meet DPE's unbundling timeline

By: Terence Creamer     3rd June 2020 In a presentation to lawmakers on Wednesday, Eskom indicated that it would not meet the unbundling timetable outlined for the vertically integrated power utility by the Department of Public Enterprises (DPE) in a policy paper released in October, titled a ‘Roadmap for Eskom in a Reformed... 

Eskom informs lawmakers it will not meet DPE's unbundling timeline
Photo by Creamer Media's Donna Slater
Eskom CEO Andre de Ruyter

Fatality at Moab Khotsong gold mine – Harmony

By: Martin Creamer     3rd June 2020 The body of an employee has been found underground at Harmony Gold’s Moab Khotsong mine, near Orkney, in North West province, Harmony stated on Wednesday. The employee was reported missing at the end of the day shift on Tuesday and an intensive search was undertaken, the Johannesburg- and New... 

PRASA raids illicit scrap metal trader, makes arrests

By: Donna Slater     3rd June 2020 Having been victim to an alarming increase in cases of infrastructure vandalism to its overhead electrical lines, electrical substations and station buildings, the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa’s (PRASA’s) security team has seized about R10-million worth of stolen cables and other rail... 

Waste-derived fuels viable to reduce reliance on fossil fuels, says Interwaste

By: Donna Slater     3rd June 2020 For energy to be sustainable in South Africa, not only by increasing capacity, but also by ensuring the country is able to meet carbon tax objectives, the energy industry needs to look beyond the use of fossil fuels such as coal, and find alternative energy providing sources, says waste... 

Standard Bank, Sefa partner to help spaza shops

By: Marleny Arnoldi     3rd June 2020 Standard Bank has partnered with the Small Enterprise Finance Agency (Sefa) to help spaza shops operating under the constraints of the Covid-19 pandemic. The agency helps spaza shops secure government funding, which can then be used to buy stock from Sefa-approved wholesalers at discounted... 

Iata reports severe air cargo demand and capacity contraction in April

By: Rebecca Campbell     3rd June 2020 The International Air Transport Association (Iata), which is the representative body for the global airline industry, has reported that global air cargo demand in April suffered the greatest year-on-year fall ever recorded. Measured in cargo-metric ton-kilometres (CTKs), demand in April was 27.7%... 

S African airlines look to restart operations, see slow recovery

By: Reuters     3rd June 2020 Two of South Africa's biggest private airlines will start flying between local airports this month after the government eased lockdown restrictions aimed at containing the coronavirus, but they said a recovery could take at least three years. Airlink has started taking bookings on its website for... 

S African airlines look to restart operations, see slow recovery

Amplats temporarily recloses recently re-opened ACP plant 

By: Martin Creamer     3rd June 2020 Platinum group metals mining and marketing company Anglo American Platinum (Amplats) on Wednesday announced it had temporarily reclosed the processing plant that reopened last month, to ensure an ongoing safe operating environment, safeguard employees and protect the plant’s integrity . Amplats... 

Amplats temporarily recloses recently re-opened ACP plant
A general view of the ACP

Used-car market shrinks, but search stats indicate positive outlook 

By: Irma Venter     3rd June 2020 While used-car sales in South Africa in May mimicked floundering new-car sales, consumers are demonstrating increasing interest in buying used cars, says digital motoring marketplace, AutoTrader. More than 17 000 used cars were sold on AutoTrader in May compared with more than 36 000 in the same... 

Rand Water secures Salga support for price increase

By: Creamer Media Reporter      3rd June 2020 Rand Water secures Salga support for price increase Rand Water on June 3 welcomed support from the South African Local Government Association for its proposed 2020/21 tariff increase. 

Gauteng claims majority of UIF Covid-19 benefit

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     3rd June 2020 Of the R16.5-billion disbursed by the Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF) as part of the Covid-19 temporary employer/employee relief scheme (TERS) benefits payment, almost half has gone to Gauteng, benefitting 1.5-million of the 3.46-million workers who have been beneficiaries. In monetary terms,... 

Responsible sourcing of critical minerals in focus as energy transition drives up demand

By: Terence Creamer     3rd June 2020 The accelerating pace and scale of the global clean-energy transition is poised to dramatically increase demand for critical energy minerals and metals, from aluminium to zirconium, with implications not only for the resources sector, but for geopolitics. The future energy system will be far more... 

Responsible sourcing of critical minerals in focus as energy transition drives up demand

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