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Work resumes on N2 Msikaba bridge project 

By: Irma Venter     25th May 2020 Work has started on the foundations for the Msikaba bridge being constructed by Concor Infrastructure, in joint venture (JV) with Mota-Engil Construction South Africa (MECSA). The R1.65-billion contract is poised to deliver the longest cable-stayed bridge in Africa.  

Work resumes on N2 Msikaba bridge project
Aerial view of the south side of the Msikaba project

Engineering News & Mining Weekly e-magazine now available

21st May 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

AfCFTA to be continent’s main post-pandemic ‘stimulus’ lever  

By: Terence Creamer     25th May 2020 The African Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA) represents the only realistic stimulus option available to resource-constrained African governments for reigniting growth in response to the Covid-19 pandemic, AfCFTA secretary-general Wamkele Mene avers. The global response to the virus had... 

AfCFTA secretary-general Wamkele Mene on the impact of Covid-19 on the trade agreement and its role in reigniting growth across the continent. Camera Work: Kutlwano Matala. Editing: Nicholas Boyd.

Covid-19 workplace protocols must become ‘second nature’ for any further lockdown easing 

By: Terence Creamer     25th May 2020 Organised business has called for domestic firms to take steps to ensure that their workplaces are Covid-19-ready in light of President Cyril Ramaphosa’s May 24 announcement that the country would transition from lockdown Level 4 to Level 3 from June 1, a move that will result in many more South... 

Covid-19 workplace protocols must become ‘second nature’ for any further lockdown easing
Photo by Creamer Media's Donna Slater
Busa president Sipho Pityana

M&R says order book remains healthy, despite delayed projects

By: Marleny Arnoldi     25th May 2020 JSE-listed engineering and construction group Murray & Roberts (M&R) says few of its projects have continued with little or no disruption as a result of Covid-19-related suspensions and restrictions. As a result, the company is reasonably certain that its earnings per share (EPS) for the... 

Tiger Brands expects at least R500m profitability knock owing to Covid-19

By: Marleny Arnoldi     25th May 2020 Consumer packaged goods company Tiger Brands says it experienced challenges within its Grains, Groceries, Value Added Meat Products (Vamp) and Exports divisions in the six months ended March 31. So much so that its earnings per share (EPS) were down 75% year-on-year to 221c apiece, and its... 

Tiger Brands expects at least R500m profitability knock owing to Covid-19

AMSA welcomes move to Level 3 in nationwide lockdown

By: Simone Liedtke     25th May 2020 Steel company ArcelorMittal South Africa (AMSA) has welcomed the announcement by President Cyril Ramaphosa that the country will be moving to Level 3 in the risk-adjusted approach to the easing of the nationwide lockdown.  At Level 3, AMSA will be able to operate with 100% of its workforce, but... 

Reserve Bank running out of space to keep lowering interest rates – Kganyago 

By: News24Wire      25th May 2020 The South African Reserve Bank has slashed the repo rate by 275 basis points this year to provide relief to indebted consumers and businesses as they navigate the economic shock of the coronavirus pandemic. But the central bank is slowly running out of space to further lower interest rates in... 

 Reserve Bank running out of space to keep lowering interest rates – Kganyago
SARB Governor Lesetja Kganyago

Household wealth takes R830bn knock quarter-on-quarter

By: Marleny Arnoldi     25th May 2020 A new study by insurance provider Momentum and the University of South Africa has found that households’ real net wealth had decreased by about R828-billion from the fourth quarter of last year to the first quarter of this year. Momentum economist Johann van Tonder says this estimated real... 

Household wealth takes R830bn knock quarter-on-quarter

NHBRC submits Covid-19 guidelines for public comment

By: Donna Slater     25th May 2020 Housing regulator, the National Home Builders Registration Council (NHBRC), has issued guidelines to deal with the management of Covid-19 in residential construction sites, for public comment. This is part of the regulator’s efforts to ensure the spread of the virus is contained and to protect... 

Alert Level 3 might save teetering construction companies

By: Donna Slater     25th May 2020 Construction companies that are on the verge of collapse after having shuttered operations during Alert Level 4 and 5 of the national Covid-19 lockdown might now be saved with a move to Alert Level 3 when construction is permitted to resume, says Construction Covid-19 Rapid Response Task Team... 

Alert Level 3 to bring relief for construction industry

By: Donna Slater     25th May 2020 KwaZulu-Natal-based construction industry representative organisation Master Builders Association KwaZulu-Natal (MBA-KZN) reports that the move to Alert Level 3 of the national Covid-19 lockdown on June 1, will bring much-needed relief for the construction industry. The move will result in the... 

Alcohol industry submits safety protocol proposals to govt

By: Simone Liedtke     25th May 2020 The South African alcohol industry, which employes more than one-million people across the value chain, has submitted various proposals, including safety protocols for the manufacturing, distribution and trading of alcohol, to the Department of Trade, Industry and Competition (DTIC). South... 

Atlantic Leaf directors, main shareholder in favour of Apollo buyout

By: Marleny Arnoldi     25th May 2020 JSE-listed and UK-focused real estate investment trust Atlantic Leaf Properties has entered into an implementation agreement with South Downs Investment (SDI), which intends to acquire the issued share capital of Atlantic for £152-million. This values Atlantic at a price at 80.5p, or R17.30, a... 

Lesedi appoints new nonexecutive director

By: Donna Slater     25th May 2020 Engineering procurement and construction company Lesedi has appointed Makole Mupita as a new nonexecutive director to its board. Mupita is a chartered accountant with more than 20 years of professional experience within the financial services sector.  

African countries must strengthen their agricultural, especially food, production

By: Rebecca Campbell     25th May 2020 A recent two-day webinar hosted by the African Development Institute, a unit of the African Development Bank (AfDB), saw delegates call on African countries to put in place, and carry out, policies to strengthen their agricultural sectors. This would include agricultural processing, trade and... 

African economic integration still has a long way to go, reveals new report

By: Rebecca Campbell     25th May 2020 The African Development Bank (AfDB), the African Union Commission (AUC) and the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) have jointly called for African countries to strengthen their economic integration. They made this call at the recent launch of the Africa Regional Integration Index... 

WEF launches blockchain principles to protect users

By: Schalk Burger     25th May 2020 The World Economic Forum (WEF) on May 22 launched 16 user rights for building blockchain applications that respect participant rights, safeguard data and protect users, and to serve as the foundational values for a decentralised future. "For blockchain technology to scale in its next phase,... 

Renewables associations call for green hydrogen focus in upcoming EU plans

By: Marleny Arnoldi     25th May 2020 Ten solar and wind associations, along with industry leaders, have launched a joint initiative − Choose Renewable Hydrogen − and are calling for the European Commission to prioritise renewable green hydrogen in its upcoming recovery and strategy decisions. The initiative aims to highlight the... 

Leading aerospace journal suggests that the A380 Superjumbo is doomed

By: Rebecca Campbell     25th May 2020 Renowned British aviation weekly Flight International has opined, in its latest edition, that the Airbus A380 Superjumbo airliner is already “heading for the scrapyard”, even though it entered service only a little more than ten years ago. This was despite its popularity with passengers, for whom... 

Leading aerospace journal suggests that the A380 Superjumbo is doomed
Photo by British Airways
An Airbus A380 of British Airways over Table Bay, with part of Cape Town in the background

New emissions blow for VW as German court backs damages claims

By: Reuters     25th May 2020 Volkswagen must pay compensation to owners of vehicles with rigged diesel engines in Germany, a court ruled on Monday, dealing a fresh blow to the automaker almost five years after its emissions scandal erupted. The ruling by Germany’s highest court for civil disputes, which will allow owners to... 

South Africa’s potential to export green hydrogen boosted

By: Martin Creamer     Updated 39 minutes ago South Africa, which has been examining its competitiveness as a potential supplier of green hydrogen to Japan, is also being courted by Europe as a potential supplier in a world that is taking steps to decarbonise, Mining Weekly can report. Clean hydrogen is enjoying unprecedented political and... 

South Africa’s potential to export green hydrogen boosted
Japan, Europe, California creating demand for production of green hydrogen in South Africa.

EPP revokes paying interim dividend

By: Marleny Arnoldi     25th May 2020 In light of uncertain trading conditions and the difficulty in determining the impact of Covid-19, JSE-listed real estate investment trust EPP has decided to revoke its dividend declaration for the six months ended December 31, 2019. The Poland-focused developer initially delayed the payment of... 

Lockdown Level 3: Squabble over 'tender' disrupts delivery of PPEs to some Gauteng schools

By: News24Wire      25th May 2020 Two districts in Gauteng have experienced disruptions in the delivery of personal protective equipment to schools, Education MEC Panyaza Lesufi says. Lesufi visited Bryanston High School on Monday, where he conducted a visit to monitor its readiness and to give an update on the progress of... 

OneAfrica launches food voucher campaign, calls on S Africans to help

By: Thabi Madiba     25th May 2020 South African public benefit organisation OneAfrica has kicked off its Food Essentials Platform as part of its relief effort during the coronavirus pandemic and has further donated 1 000 food vouchers to support vulnerable households. Details of OneAfrica’s initiative can be found on its website... 

OneAfrica launches food voucher campaign, calls on S Africans to help

Select Committee says DMRE is improving its service delivery

By: Marleny Arnoldi     25th May 2020 The Select Committee on Land Reform, Environment, Mineral Resources and Energy has welcomed the plan to implement the proposed nuclear new build programme at a scale and pace that the country can afford to ensure the security of energy supply. The Department of Mineral Resources and Energy... 

AMCU calls for testing of all employees at affiliated workplaces 

By: Donna Slater     25th May 2020 The Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (AMCU) has again called on employers to test all employees for Covid-19 as the pandemic continues to spread across South Africa. AMCU notes that while it has consistently called for the testing of all workers, the official stance of... 

Africa proactive in implementing measures to flatten Covid-19 curve – Ramaphosa

By: Thabi Madiba     25th May 2020 As the African continent celebrates Africa Day on Monday amid the global coronavirus pandemic, South African President Cyril Ramaphosa acknowledged that despite the resource challenges facing the continent, governments have been swift and proactive in implementing measures in the fight against... 

Africa proactive in implementing measures to flatten Covid-19 curve – Ramaphosa
President Cyril Ramaphosa

Northam Platinum strengthens liquidity, attracts R411m new funding 

By: Martin Creamer     25th May 2020 Platinum group metals mining company Northam Platinum has strengthened its liquidity position in response to Covid-19 by attracting R411-million of additional new long-term funding during the lockdown period as part of the completion of its R2.65-billion restructuring of its domestic medium-term... 

Northam Platinum strengthens liquidity, attracts R411m new funding
Photo by Cre
Northam CEO Paul Dunne

The science behind Level 3 - Ramaphosa lauds 'diverse and sometimes challenging views'

By: News24Wire      25th May 2020 As President Cyril Ramaphosa announced the downgrade to Level 3 of the national Covid-19 lockdown, he thanked scientists for challenging and pushing the government's response to the global pandemic. "We appreciate the diverse and sometimes challenging views of the scientists and health... 

The science behind Level 3 - Ramaphosa lauds 'diverse and sometimes challenging views'
President Cyril Ramaphosa

South Africa to move to Level 3, but risk of infections now even greater – Ramaphosa

By: News24Wire      24th May 2020 After nearly 60 days of tough Covid-19 lockdown restrictions, President Cyril Ramaphosa announced a drop to Level 3, bringing a significant easing of measures to combat the deadly pandemic. 

South Africa to move to Level 3, but risk of infections now even greater – Ramaphosa
Photo by Creamer Media
President Cyril Ramaphosa

Mponeng detects 196 Covid cases, suspends mining – AngloGold Ashanti

By: Martin Creamer     24th May 2020 Gold mining company AngloGold Ashanti on Monday confirmed that, following the detection of its first positive Covid-19 case at its Mponeng gold mine last week, a comprehensive screening, contact tracing and testing programme had revealed 196 positive cases at the site in Merafong, in Gauteng... 

Mponeng detects 196 Covid cases, suspends mining  – AngloGold Ashanti
Mponeng Gold Mine

Full reopening of mining from June 1 – President Ramaphosa

By: Martin Creamer     24th May 2020 Subject to strict Covid-19 protocols, mining will be allowed to reopen fully from June 1, President Cyril Ramaphosa said on Sunday. In his address on South Africa’s response to the coronavirus pandemic, the President announced that South Africa would advance to level 3 from June 1, with an... 

Full reopening of mining from June 1 – President Ramaphosa
Photo by Creamer Media's Donna Slater
President Cyril Ramaphosa

Global steel production down 13% y/y

By: Donna Slater     22nd May 2020 World crude steel production for the 64 countries reporting to the World Steel Association (worldsteel) decreased by 13% year-on-year to 137.1-million tonnes in April. Africa's output decreased by 55.7% year-on-year to 603 000 t, with South Africa's output having decreased by 99.5%. 

Covid-19 highlights challenges, opportunities in South Africa's water sector

By: Simone Liedtke     22nd May 2020 The Covid-19 pandemic has magnified the deficits in the water and sanitation sectors in South Africa, Water Research Commission (WRC) CEO Dr Dhesigan Naidoo said during a webinar on May 22. He added that the pandemic had also highlighted some of the opportunities in these sectors. 

Covid-19 highlights challenges, opportunities in South Africa's water sector

International initiative to fund African Covid-19 research unveiled

By: Rebecca Campbell     22nd May 2020 South Africa’s National Research Foundation (NRF) has announced the launch of a $4.75-million (about R90-million) international Covid-19 Africa Rapid Fund Grant. The purpose of the fund is to support the creation and translation of knowledge to help with the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of... 

Regenesys pledges R100m to lower tuition fees during lockdown

By: Donna Slater     22nd May 2020 Regenesys Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Regenesys Business School, on May 22 launched a Covid-19 lockdown education initiative with a R100-million pledge, which will be used to reduce course fees by 60%. Regenesys Foundation enabled Regenesys Business School to make the pledge.  

First window of SMME debt relief financing scheme closing

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     22nd May 2020 The first window of the Department of Small Business Development's (DSBD's) Small, Medium-sized and Microenterprise (SMME) Debt Relief Financing Scheme will close soon. The scheme was initially allocated an amount of R200-million, which was later increased to R500-million, when the department... 

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