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Ground-breaking R488m fund seeks to catalyse green-economy SMMEs 

By: Terence Creamer     7th April 2020 An innovative new fund has been launched in South Africa to incentivise fund managers to invest in small, medium-sized and microenterprises (SMMEs) that are able to generate verifiable green outcomes and jobs in the energy, water, waste, infrastructure and land-management sectors. The... 

Ground-breaking R488m fund seeks to catalyse green-economy SMMEs

Engineering News & Mining Weekly e-magazine now available

2nd April 2020 For the duration of South Africa’s 21-day 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

South African private equity firm teams up with IPP to develop 14.7 MW hydro plant in Kenya 

By: Terence Creamer     7th April 2020 South African private equity firm teams up with IPP to develop 14.7 MW hydro plant in Kenya South African private equity fund manager Metier has signed an agreement with Tembo Power, of Mauritius, for the joint development of the 14.7 MW Kaptis project, a run-of-river hydropower project near the... 

South African private equity firm teams up with IPP to develop 14.7 MW hydro plant in Kenya
The 5.25 MW Sindila hydropower project, in Uganda.

Review the market longevity of vehicles made locally, asks EV programme 

By: Irma Venter     7th April 2020 Government’s incentive scheme for the local automotive industry, the Automotive Production and Development Programme (APDP), implemented in 2013 and ending in 2020, has no direct incentive for the production of alternative drivetrain technologies, such as battery electric vehicles (BEVs), says... 

Review the market longevity of vehicles made locally, asks EV programme

Covid-19 puts EV sales, carbon emission targets at risk, says GlobalData 

By: Irma Venter     7th April 2020 Data analytics and consulting company GlobalData says lower oil prices as a result of the Covid-19 crisis could reduce electric vehicle (EV) demand and impair European Union (EU) efforts to significantly reduce average new vehicle carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions in the European car market.... 

South African defence company wins major export order

By: Rebecca Campbell     7th April 2020 German defence group Rheinmetall announced on April 7 that its South African subsidiary company, Rheinmetall Denel Munition (RDM), had won an export order worth more than €70-million (or more than $80-million). The client was identified only as an “international customer”. The order is for... 

South African defence company wins major export order
Photo by Rheinmetall Denel Munitions
A Denel G6 155 mm self-propelled gun/howitzer fires an RDM shell using RDM propellant

Standard Bank notes SARB’s hold-back guidance on dividends, bonuses

By: Martin Creamer     7th April 2020 Africa’s biggest bank by assets, Standard Bank Group, said on Tuesday that it had noted the contents of the guidance of the Prudential Authority of the South African Reserve Bank (SARB) on dividend distributions to ordinary shareholders. SARB’s Prudential Authority, headed by Kuben Naidoo, has... 

Standard Bank notes SARB’s hold-back guidance on dividends, bonuses
Sim Tshabalala

Insight: Navigating South Africa’s Covid-19 excessive-pricing regulations

7th April 2020 In this article, Herbert Smith Freehills competition law team of Stewart Payne, Natasha Rachwal, Nick Altini and Leana Engelbrecht unpack the various regulatory responses instituted by the South African government in response to the Covid-19 pandemic with a particular focus on the... 

Unemployment beneficiaries wait while Nedlac discussions progress

By: Donna Slater     Updated 5 hours ago Many employers are waiting for greater clarity regarding unemployment benefits for their staff that have been temporarily laid off during the national lockdown, which is enforced from March 27 to April 16 to curb the spread of Covid-19, according to business law firm Cliffe Dekker Hofmeyr (CDH).... 

Unemployment beneficiaries wait while Nedlac discussions progress
Gillian Lumb

The Property Industry Group announces industry-wide assistance, relief package

By: Simone Liedtke     7th April 2020 The Property Industry Group has announced an industry-wide assistance and relief package for retail tenants that are hardest hit by South Africa’s lockdown in the face of the Covid-19 pandemic. The initiative, which focuses principally on supporting affected small-, medium-sized and... 

The Property Industry Group announces industry-wide assistance, relief package
Property Industry Group spokesperson and SA Reit Association chairperson Estienne de Klerk

EOH reports lower interim revenue, but operating costs decrease by 31%

By: Schalk Burger     7th April 2020 Information and communication technology (ICT) services company EOH's revenue for the six months ended January 31, decreased by 21.8% year-on-year to R6.35-billion, mainly as a result of lower hardware and software sales, as well as legacy public sector enterprise resource planning implementation... 

SME relief programme oversubscribed days after applications open

By: Simone Liedtke     7th April 2020 The Sakuma Relief Programme’s fund has been oversubscribed, with applications for financial assistance exceeding the current available capital of R1-billion, just days after applications opened. This includes both completed applications and applications in progress. 

Research reveals gap in Covid-19 funding for businesses in townships

By: Donna Slater     Updated 5 hours ago The Covid-19 pandemic and the current lockdown are already having a devastating impact on South Africa’s economy, with informal and small businesses in townships likely to feel the brunt of the impact.   A study by postgraduate students at the University of Cape Town (UCT) and entrepreneurs from... 

Standard Bank takes a 40% stake in Payment24

By: Irma Venter     7th April 2020 Standard Bank has acquired a 40% stake in digital fuel management solutions and telematics company Payment24.  Payment24 is a technology development firm that supports companies with large fleets. 

Standard Bank takes a 40% stake in Payment24
Nolan Daniel and Shadab Rahil 

Space data essential to help plan national response to Covid-19

By: Rebecca Campbell     Updated 4 hours ago The South African National Space Agency (Sansa) has committed itself to using its expertise and capabilities, and the expertise and capabilities of the wider national space sector, to help the country’s decision-makers combat the Covid-19 pandemic. A major mission of Sansa was the acquisition,... 

Imperial withdraws distribution guidance, but most operations continue

By: Marleny Arnoldi     Updated 5 hours ago JSE-listed Imperial Logistics has withdrawn its distribution guidance for the financial year ending June 30, as a result of the increasing uncertainty and volatility globally owing to the Covid-19 pandemic. The company operates across 32 countries, each with respective mitigation measures and... 

Illovo Sugar reconfigures medical infrastructure to deal with potential Covid-19 infections

By: Simone Liedtke     Updated 5 hours ago Sugar producer Illovo Sugar Africa is reconfiguring its medical infrastructure to deal directly with any potential Covid-19 infection within its own business, or the surrounding communities. In commemorating World Health Day on April 7, the producer explained how it had converted its existing... 

Vodacom, Safaricom to accelerate M-Pesa growth following acquisition

By: Natasha Odendaal     7th April 2020 Telecommunications groups Vodacom and Safaricom plan to accelerate the expansion of M-Pesa into Africa following its acquisition for an undisclosed amount from Vodafone. The duo have formed a joint venture (JV) to incorporate the M-Pesa brand and its product development and support services, and... 

Octodec withdraws distribution guidance

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     Updated 4 hours ago JSE-listed Octodec has withdrawn its distribution guidance for the financial year to end August 31 owing to the ongoing unpredictability in the market as a result of Covid-19. Octodec says the business continuity and safety measures put in place in collaboration with City Property Administration,... 

Unctad says Covid-19 implications go as far as intl investment agreements

By: Marleny Arnoldi     7th April 2020 New data from intergovernmental body, the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development’s (Unctad’s) investment policy monitor shows that investment policy responses to the Covid-19 pandemic vary from country to country. The responses include measures supporting investors and domestic... 

Energy Vision to deploy purpose-built power systems for base stations in Nigeria, Gabon

By: Natasha Odendaal     Updated 7 hours ago Telecom-focused energy service company Energy Vision is deploying purpose-built power systems for outdoor telecom sites across Nigeria and Gabon. The group ordered Swedish technology company eSite Power Systems’s eSite x10 as it expands its African operations into Nigeria, with additional power... 

Iata unveils 2019 airline safety report – globally, good news

By: Rebecca Campbell     7th April 2020 The International Air Transport Association (Iata) has reported that airline safety last year improved again, both in relation to 2018 and to the five-year average for 2014 to 2018. This improvement was across all the major safety performance indicators. “The safety and wellbeing of our... 

Mopani transitions copper operations to care and maintenance 

By: Martin Creamer     Updated 4 hours ago Copper mining company Mopani Copper Mines plc said on Tuesday that it had placed its mining operations on care and maintenance and a number of projects on hold. Mopani, owned 73.1% by Glencore, is an integrated copper producer located in the Copperbelt of central Zambia. 

Innovation Hub launched to promote responsible innovation in the South African financial sector

By: Donna Slater     Updated 5 hours ago South Africa’s financial regulators on April 7 launched the Intergovernmental Fintech Working Group (IFWG) Innovation Hub in response to changes in the financial sector driven by financial technology (fintech) and to promote responsible innovation in the sector. The IFWG Innovation Hub provides... 

Stellenbosch University has started producing visors for healthcare workers

By: Marleny Arnoldi     Updated 5 hours ago Stellenbosch University’s orthopaedic surgery division has started producing visors to protect healthcare workers against Covid-19, using three-dimensional (3D) printing. The 3D printing laboratory was originally built by the university in 2018 to assist surgeons in planning and rehearsing... 

Stellenbosch University has started producing visors for healthcare workers
Students working in a 3D printing lab at Stellenbosch University

Kogi Iron sees ongoing interest in Nigeria-based cast steel project

By: Simone Liedtke     Updated 5 hours ago ASX-listed Kogi Iron is seeing ongoing interest from potential new investors in its Agbaja cast steel project, in Nigeria, where Kogi is starting to see global capital flows to the commodity sector. Owing to the rapid escalation and global impacts of the coronavirus, or Covid-19, Kogi and KCM... 

Kogi Iron sees ongoing interest in Nigeria-based cast steel project
A location map of Kogi Iron's Nigerian cast steel project.

Sapref donates masks, goggles to community clinics

By: Marleny Arnoldi     Updated 5 hours ago The Sapref refinery, a joint venture between Shell South Africa Refining and BP Southern Africa, has heeded the call for corporates to donate their personal protective equipment (PPE) stock to the healthcare sector. This comes amid a shortage of masks and other PPE needed to fight the Covid-19... 

Sapref donates masks, goggles to community clinics
Sapref donates equipment to the Bluff clinic, in KwaZulu-Natal

SMMEs urged to apply for Covid-19 Tourism Relief Fund 

By: Yvonne Silaule     Updated 6 hours ago As part of government efforts to ease the financial burden of the coronavirus on the local tourism sector, the Department of Tourism has launched the Covid-19 Tourism Relief Fund, aimed at small, medium-sized and microenterprises. Applications open on Tuesday, April 7 and close on May 30. SMMEs... 

SMMEs urged to apply for Covid-19 Tourism Relief Fund
Tourism Minister Mmamoloko Kubayi-Ngubane

De Beers contributes $2.5m Covid-19 funding to Botswana, Namibia  

By: Martin Creamer     Updated 6 hours ago Diamond mining and marketing corporation, the De Beers Group, on Tuesday announced that it would contribute $2 500 000 across Botswana and Namibia to aid the response to the Covid-19 crisis. De Beers Group is a 50/50 joint venture partner with both Botswana and Namibia in the recovery and sorting... 

De Beers contributes $2.5m Covid-19 funding to Botswana, Namibia
De Beers Group CEO Bruce Cleaver

Another 180 water tanks distributed in Gauteng

By: Natasha Odendaal     Updated 6 hours ago The Department of Water and Sanitation (DWS) has delivered another 180 water tanks across Gauteng. This brings the total number of deployed water tanks to 1662 water tanks throughout the province as part of an intervention to fight the rapidly spreading Covid-19 pandemic. 

Bosch Rexroth South Africa to 3D print protective face masks

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     Updated 6 hours ago Fluid power and automation company Bosch Rexroth South Africa has responded to Netcare's call for assistance from the local three-dimensional (3D) printing community to produce face masks for first-line responders. Bosch Rexroth subsidiary Tectra Automation Mechatronics technician Nico Davies... 

Bosch Rexroth South Africa to 3D print protective face masks
The face mask

Covid-19 outbreak to cause recession, impact property – FNB

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     Updated 6 hours ago With broad consensus that the Covid-19 outbreak will result in a sharp contraction in global gross domestic product (GDP), as well as for South Africa, in the first half of this year, the consequences of the outbreak are worrying, says FNB Property economist Siphamandla Mkhwanazi. While the... 

Gold Fields promoting widespread human welfare during lockdown 

By: Martin Creamer     Updated 7 hours ago Gold mining company Gold Fields, which has placed its South Deep gold mine in Gauteng on care and maintenance for the 21-day lockdown period, is promoting human welfare funding cross a number of fronts during the Covid-19 crisis. Firstly, South Deep, the Westonaria mine with a 70-year life, will... 

Gold Fields promoting widespread human welfare during lockdown
Photo by Creamer Media
Gold Fields executive VP Martin Preece

Chemicals industry likely to face longer-than-expected downturn, says ICIS

By: Donna Slater     7th April 2020 The Independent Commodity Intelligence Service (ICIS) has warned the international chemical sector to prepare for an extended downturn along with lower-for-longer oil prices, both of which will have big implications for profitability and investments. ICIS demand forecasting lead analyst Rhian... 

Independent research body highlights complexity of South Africa’s food chain

By: Rebecca Campbell     7th April 2020 Independent research agency the Bureau for Food and Agricultural Policy (BFAP) has highlighted that South Africa’s food supply chains are complex. “These supply chains are a web of formal and informal interactions between agricultural inputs, logistics, farmers, spazas [informal convenience... 

Total divests assets in Brunei, Sierra Leone and Liberia

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     7th April 2020 In line with its strategy of actively managing its asset portfolio and its objective to divest $5-billion of assets in 2019 and 2020, energy company Total is nearing completion of the sale of exploration production assets in Brunei and marketing and services assets in Sierra Leone and Liberia.... 

Covid-19 preventing shareholders from attending Anglo AGM

By: Martin Creamer     7th April 2020 Shareholders will not be permitted to attend this year’s annual general meeting (AGM) of Anglo American because of Covid-19 restrictions – but they have been invited to submit questions in advance for answering at the AGM. The London- and Johannesburg-listed diversified mining company said in a... 

Prudential Authority welcomes financial relief measures taken by banks

By: Simone Liedtke     7th April 2020 The Prudential Authority (PA) welcomes the measures taken by banks to support their customers during this period of economic turmoil and uncertainty and notes that a “safe, sound and robust banking system is a key part of South Africa’s shock absorbers during these times”.  This is especially the... 

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