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Audio Articles

Energy transition opportunities, risks  

17th September 2021 Creamer Media's Chanel de Bruyn speaks to Engineering News Editor Terence Creamer about the need for South Africa to compile a clear country commitment to net-zero and to find a common vision and action plan around the just transition, as well as about the growth potential for hydrogen and energy... 

Photo of Terence Creamer
Energy transition opportunities, risks

New-vehicle market could reach 485 000 units, if supply holds – Hill 

By: Irma Venter     16th September 2021 The South African new-vehicle market could reach around 485 000 units this year, says Ford South Africa MD Neale Hill. This will be a significant increase from the 380 000-unit sales recorded last year. 

Image of Ford Rangers on a truck

Latest Altron Fintech index reveals short-term credit decline hurts economy, jobs and taxes 

By: Natasha Odendaal     16th September 2021 A decline in the extension of short-term credit in South Africa has impacted the economy through loss of sales, fewer jobs and lower tax collections, Altron Fintech's inaugural Altron Fintech Short-term Credit Impact (AFSCI) Index shows. The AFSCI Index, unpacking the economic impact of... 

South Africa’s battery energy storage market poised for growth 

By: Terence Creamer     16th September 2021 A South African energy project finance specialist estimates that the country’s near-term battery energy storage project pipeline could grow to about R53-billion over the coming three years, potentially making the country one of the largest adopters of such systems globally. The estimate includes... 

A photo of a battery storage system

SEZs remain attractive, but embracing broader scope as energy, technology change economy 

By: Schalk Burger     15th September 2021 The 12 special economic zones (SEZs) in South Africa remain relatively attractive destinations owing to the financial and non-financial incentives and support services they offer to specific industrial segments. However, they are also developing additional services and offerings to meet demand... 

Hyundai, Mini and Hino come out tops in NADA dealership survey 

By: Irma Venter     15th September 2021 Hyundai and Mini have walked away with top honours in the 2021 National Automobile Dealers’ Association (NADA) Dealer Satisfaction Index Survey (DSI) for passenger and light commercial vehicles, while Mitsubishi was the most improved brand. Gold winners in this segment were Suzuki, Toyota,... 

Image of a Hino dealership

Govt’s private-sector participation drive could increase efficiency, prosperity – Grindrod 

By: Irma Venter     15th September 2021 A port that runs efficiently “can bring prosperity all around”, says Grindrod Freight Services CEO Xolani Mbambo. South Africa’s major ports are, however, currently ranked close to the bottom of the list in terms of global competitiveness. 

Image of Grindrod Freight Services CEO Xolani Mbambo
Grindrod Freight Services CEO Xolani Mbambo

WEC Projects to test, commercialise off-grid sanitation system 

By: Natasha Odendaal     14th September 2021 WEC Projects has been selected by the Water Research Commission (WRC), under the South African Sanitation Technology Enterprise Programme (Sastep), to test a new off-grid sanitation system with the intention of commercialising it in South Africa. The NEWgenerator, which was developed by the... 

Cartrack owner acquires 70.1% of Picup Technologies in R70-million deal 

By: Irma Venter     14th September 2021 Karooooo has acquired 70.1% of Picup Technologies (Picup) in a deal valued at R70-million.  Karooooo owns 100% of Cartrack, a mobility software-as-a-service (Saas) platform that maximises the value of automotive and workflow data by providing real-time data analytics solutions for smart... 

Image of Karooooo CEO Zak Calisto
Zak Calisto

Net-zero goal could be new ‘shared vision that binds’ South Africa 

By: Terence Creamer     14th September 2021 A just transition towards net-zero carbon emissions by 2050 offers significant opportunities for a new growth path built on green industrialisation and could provide the anchor for a new “shared vision that binds us”, former Deputy Finance Minister and State Capture whistle-blower Mcebisi Jonas... 

Photo of Mcebisi Jonas
Photo by Creamer Media
Mcebisi Jonas

Africa set to become global climate migration ‘hotspot’ 

By: Terence Creamer     13th September 2021 A new World Bank report warns that sub-Saharan African could make up 86-million of the world’s 216-million climate migrants by 2050, while North Africa could have the largest share of internal climate migrants relative to total population. Titled ‘Groundswell’, the report updates and expands on... 

Photo of dry earth

Ford SA exports 500 000th Ranger 

By: Irma Venter     13th September 2021 Ford South Africa’s (Ford SA’s) Silverton plant, in Pretoria, this month produced its 500 000th Ranger for the export market. This year is the current Ranger’s tenth anniversary, with the new model to be launched next year. 

Image of a Ford Ranger being exported from South Africa

Bids sought for socioeconomic study into Eskom’s coal repowering and repurposing plan 

By: Terence Creamer     13th September 2021 A global coalition set up to support countries in implementing the carbon-reduction pledges contained in their Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) has announced that it will fund a study to assess the socioeconomic impacts of the shutdown, repowering and repurposing of seven Eskom... 

Photo of a road to an Eskom power station
Photo by Creamer Media
Eskom to shut 11 000 MW of coal capacity by 2030

Comair benefiting from resumption in flights, R270m in capital inflows 

By: Simone Liedtke     10th September 2021 Following the resumption of scheduled flight operations on September 1, Comair reached another milestone in the business rescue process with capital inflows of R270-million.  Flights were resumed at the start of this month after a temporary suspension as a result of Level 3 Covid-19 travel... 

Fritz to depart Mercedes-Benz SA, Raine announced as successor 

By: Irma Venter     10th September 2021 Mercedes-Benz South Africa (MBSA) has announced that co-CEO and Mercedes-Benz Cars executive director Johannes Fritz will be moving back to Germany to head up Mercedes-Benz Cars and Vans in Bavaria, one of the largest sales regions in the German market.  “Fritz, who spent four years in South... 

Image of MBSA co-CEO Mark Raine
Mark Raine

Bell Equipment to launch self-driving truck in 2022 

By: Irma Venter     10th September 2021 Bell Equipment will launch its first autonomous articulated dump truck (ADT) on the global market next year, says Bell Equipment CEO Leon Goosen. The truck will also be available in South Africa. 

Image of Bell ADT trucks
The Bell ADT

Developments in SA's automotive industry  

10th September 2021 Engineering News Senior Deputy Editor Irma Venter tells Creamer Media's Chanel de Bruyn about the progress Ford South Africa is making at its Pretoria plant in preparation for the start of production of the next-generation Ranger bakkie, as well as about how German car manufacturer BMW has... 

Image of Irma Venter
Developments in SA's automotive industry

Quality of life in Gauteng declines amid pandemic, survey finds   

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     9th September 2021 Research institute the Gauteng City-Region Observatory’s (GCRO’s) Quality of Life (QoL) Survey for 2020/21 finds that the quality of life in the province decreased considerably since the previous study; however, this must be understood in the context of the pandemic. The GCRO is a partnership... 

An image showing a slide from a webinar unpacking the Gauteng City-Region Observatory’s Quality of Life Survey for 2020/21
Gauteng City-Region Observatory Research Strategy director Graeme Götz outlines findings regarding the decrease of overall quality of life in the GCRO’s 2020/21 survey

SA Plastics Pact publishes first list of problematic, unnecessary plastics to be phased out 

By: Simone Liedtke     9th September 2021 The South African (SA) Plastics Pact members have published a first list of problematic or unnecessary plastics for phasing out this year and next. The SA Plastics Pact is a collaborative pre-competitive initiative that brings together key stakeholders from the local plastics value chain,... 

Production at BMW Rosslyn plant prioritised amid semi-conductor shortage  

By: Irma Venter     9th September 2021 The current global semi-conductor (computer chip) shortage has not significantly impacted operations at the BMW plant in Rosslyn, Pretoria, as production at the facility is being prioritised within the German car maker’s larger manufacturing network. “At BMW we are managing quite well [with the... 

Image of BMW X3s being exported from  theRosslyn plant in Pretoria

South Africa’s green hydrogen ‘first mover’ opportunity based on three structural advantages  

By: Terence Creamer     8th September 2021 South Africa has three favourable structural characteristics that potentially give it a “first mover advantage” to become a global green-hydrogen leader, Sasol CEO Fleetwood Grobler argued in his address during a ‘Hydrogen Economy Discussion’ facilitated by well-known mining personality Bernard... 

Sasol CEO Fleetwood Grobler
Sasol CEO Fleetwood Grobler

Ford creates 1 200 jobs as it unveils modernised Ranger line 

By: Irma Venter     8th September 2021 Ford South Africa (Ford SA) has created around 1 200 incremental jobs by reintroducing a third shift to its operations at the Silverton assembly plant. The additional shift forms part of the US auto maker’s $1.05-billion investment in the Pretoria plant to produce the next generation Ranger... 

Image of the new Ford Ranger plant and assembly line in Silverton, Pretoria

South Africa’s updated NDC climate pledge to be released ‘very soon’ 

By: Terence Creamer     7th September 2021 Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment Minister Barbara Creecy reported on Tuesday that South Africa’s revised Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC), which is to be deposited with the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change later this year, is close to being finalised and will... 

Forestry, Fisheries and Environment Minister Barbara Creecy
Photo by Creamer Media's Donna Slater
Forestry, Fisheries and Environment Minister Barbara Creecy

ANC offers strong endorsement of Eskom’s just energy transaction following lekgotla  

By: Terence Creamer     7th September 2021 The National Executive Committee (NEC) of the African National Congress (ANC) has given its backing to the just energy transaction being pursued by State-owned electricity producer Eskom. In closing remarks following the NEC’s September lekgotla, ANC president Cyril Ramaphosa said that the... 

Photo of the Komati power station
The Komati power station

Promotion of electromobility in SA key to battery production participation 

By: Irma Venter     6th September 2021 One of the first steps for South Africa to participate in the global battery supply chain for battery electric or hybrid vehicles would be the promotion of electromobility in the local market, proposes Mercedes-Benz production and supply chain management board member Dr Jörg Burzer. “This is one... 

Image of the Mercedes-Benz EQB car
The Mercedes-Benz EQB electric vehicle

Sasol, UCT confirm progress on catalysts that convert hydrogen, CO2 into green jet fuel 

By: Terence Creamer     6th September 2021 Energy and chemicals group Sasol, which aims to become a leader in South Africa’s promising green hydrogen industry, reports that research advancements have been achieved that are supportive of the conversion of hydrogen and carbon dioxide (CO2) into green jet fuel and chemicals. Made in... 

Photo of research under way at Sasol Research & Technology

Ramaphosa hints at yet more reforms as he predicts ‘massive investment’ in wake of electricity amendment 

By: Terence Creamer     3rd September 2021 President Cyril Ramaphosa has described a recently gazetted amendment to Schedule 2 of the Electricity Regulation Act, opening the way for sub-100 MW grid-tied embedded generators to supply one or more customers without a licence, as a “defining moment in energy generation in our country”.... 

President Cyril Ramaphosa in a face mask as he prepares to answer questions during a hybrid sitting of Parliament on Friday
President Cyril Ramaphosa in a face mask as he prepares to answer questions during a hybrid sitting of Parliament on Friday

Mediclinic Southern Africa enters R2bn renewables procurement deal 

By: Simone Liedtke     3rd September 2021 Diversified international private healthcare services group Mediclinic’s Southern Africa division has entered into an agreement, valued at up to £110-million, or about R2-billion, with Energy Exchange of Southern Africa to procure renewable electricity. As part of the group's broad environmental,... 

Pic of Wind Turbines and solar panels.

Eskom debt remains a challenge as utility posts nearly R19bn loss  

3rd September 2021 Creamer Media's Chanel de Bruyn speaks to Engineering News Editor Terence Creamer about the nearly R19-billion loss posted by power utility Eskom for the 2021 financial year, as well as about Eskom's still-high debt levels and what impact this could have on the utility's just energy transition... 

Photo of Terence Creamer
Eskom debt remains a challenge as utility posts nearly R19bn loss

TFR approaches customers on security levy to raise funds for rapid security overhaul  

By: Terence Creamer     3rd September 2021 State-owned railway utility Transnet Freight Rail (TFR) is approaching its customers about instituting a three-year security levy, which will be used to raise the funding needed for the rapid deployment of technology-based security solutions across a network that is currently collapsing under the... 

A photo of a TFR locomotive

M&R on ‘cusp of a multiyear period of strong earnings growth’ 

By: Terence Creamer     2nd September 2021 Engineering and construction group Murray & Roberts (M&R) says it is “on the cusp of a multiyear period of strong earnings growth”, a claim underpinned by an order book that has grown to an all-time high of R60.7-billion, from R54.2-billion in 2020, as well as a strong project pipeline. The... 

Photo of Henry Laas
M&R CEO Henry Laas

Public Works to release RFI in development of green energy, resource efficiency drive 

By: Donna Slater     2nd September 2021 The Department of Public Works and Infrastructure (DPWI) plans to release a request for information (RFI) for the Integrated Renewable Energy and Resource Efficiency Programme (iREREP) on September 20, to garner ideas and information into ways to deliver mutual value through strong partnerships... 

An image of the Mpumalanga High Court
The Mpumalanga High Court, which the DPWI handed over in November 2019, is an example of a building where energy and water saving technologies could be rolled out

Aspen reinstates dividend; in talks to market Covid-19 vaccine in Africa 

By: Marleny Arnoldi     2nd September 2021 JSE-listed pharmaceutical manufacturer Aspen has once again resumed dividends and will pay out R1.2-billion, or 262c apiece, to shareholders for the financial year ended June 30. The group’s normalised earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation (Ebitda) for the year came in 3%... 

Aspen group CE Stephen Saad
Aspen group CE Stephen Saad

Eskom offers business customers a trial Renewable Energy Tariff 

By: Simone Liedtke     1st September 2021 State-owned power utility Eskom has launched the Renewable Energy Tariff pilot programme to assist businesses who have corporate renewable energy commitments. This, the entity said on September 1, enables customers to source a blended electricity supply with up to 100% of their electricity from... 

Pic/Image of Eskom's Sere wind farm.
Eskom's Sere wind farm.

New-vehicle sales jump by 25% in August, exports down 16% 

By: Irma Venter     1st September 2021 New-vehicle sales in August increased by 24.6%, to 41 425 units, compared with the same month last year. Out of the total industry sales an estimated 83.6% represented dealer sales, with 12% of vehicles going to the rental industry. Around 2.5% of new vehicles were sold to industry corporate... 

Image of cars being exported from Durban harbour

Report encourages fit-for-purpose cross-border road transport interventions 

By: Simone Liedtke     1st September 2021 South Africa has seen a 6% fall in exports, from R253-billion in 2019 to R238-billion in 2020, which the Cross-Border Road Transport Agency (C-BRTA) largely attributed to the widespread impact of the Covid-19 pandemic. The pandemic, it said, severely affected South Africa’s exports owing to the... 

Pic/Image of the Beitbridge Border Post.
The Beitbridge Border Post.

Eskom warns of ongoing injections unless solution is found to ‘unsustainable’ debt 

By: Terence Creamer     31st August 2021 State-owned power utility Eskom’s debt burden remains “unsustainable” despite an R81.9-billion reduction in its gross debt to R401.8-billion in the year to March 31, 2021, during which the entity remained a going concern only because of a R56-billion government injection. The utility reported a... 

Photo of CEO Andre de Ruyter
Photo by Creamer Media's Donna Slater
Eskom CEO Andre de Ruyter

DBSA expects strong demand for $200m embedded-generation scheme amid regulatory reform tail wind 

By: Terence Creamer     31st August 2021 The Development Bank of Southern Africa (DBSA) is optimistic that there will be a significant uptake of its $200-million Embedded Generation Investment Programme (EGIP) in light of recent regulatory changes exempting sub-100 MW facilities from licensing and enabling distributed plants to both... 

Photo of DBSA project finance head Mpho Mokwele
DBSA project finance head Mpho Mokwele
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