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Construction News

Covid-19 could delay completion of Group Five business rescue plan

By: Simone Liedtke     2nd April 2020 Owing to the economic and social consequences directly associated with the Covid-19 pandemic, and South Africa’s national lockdown, construction company Group Five may face delays in the completion of its business rescue proceedings. In a statement on April 1, the business rescue practitioners... 

Three Reits withdraw distribution guidance for the year

By: Marleny Arnoldi     1st April 2020 JSE-listed real estate investment trusts (Reits) Vukile Property Fund, Hyprop Investments and Attacq have announced the withdrawal of their distribution guidances for their respective financial year-ends during 2020. This follows after the governments in countries where they operate have declared... 

Three Reits withdraw distribution guidance for the year

AfDB, Moz government ink deal to pave road crucial to trade

By: Donna Slater     1st April 2020 The government of Mozambique and development finance institution, the African Development Bank (AfDB). have signed a protocol agreement for a $34-million grant for the paving of the 35 km Nambungali-Roma road, in Mozambique, to facilitate trade and promote social inclusion of local communities.... 

AfDB, Moz government ink deal to pave road crucial to trade

GlobalData revises full-year copper output growth forecast lower

By: Simone Liedtke     1st April 2020 Global copper production is expected to be impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic, with data analytics and consulting company GlobalData now forecasting output growth of just 1.9% to 21-million tonnes for this year. This compares with its previous forecast of 3.4% year-on-year growth in global copper... 

M&R appoints Boggenpoel as nonexec director

By: Marleny Arnoldi     31st March 2020 JSE-listed Murray & Roberts has appointed Jesmane Boggenpoel nonexecutive director and member of the risk and audit commitees, effective April 1. She is a chartered accountant and has many years’ experience in investments, transactions and private equity funds.  

Civil confidence rises further in first quarter, but remains below desired level

By: Marleny Arnoldi     31st March 2020 The First National Bank (FNB)/Bureau for Economic Research Civil Confidence Index gained two points to 24 in the first quarter of the year. This follows a seven-point rise to 22 in the fourth quarter of last year.  

Civil confidence rises further in first quarter, but remains below desired level

EAIF becomes first third-party fund to sign cooperation agreement with IFC

By: Donna Slater     30th March 2020 Private Infrastructure Development Group (PIDG) company, the Emerging Africa Infrastructure Fund (EAIF), has signed a master cooperation agreement (MCA) with the International Finance Corporation (IFC), joining 33 development finance institutions worldwide that have also signed the MCA. The EAIF... 

Mantashe sustains 1 MW licence-exemption cap despite calls for higher threshold 

By: Terence Creamer     27th March 2020 Mineral Resources and Energy Minister Gwede Mantashe Gazetted an amended version of Schedule 2 of the Electricity Regulation Act on March 26, which the Department of Mineral Resources and Energy (DMRE) said further clarified the requirements for generation for own use for facilities of under 1... 

Mantashe sustains 1 MW licence-exemption cap despite calls for higher threshold
Photo by Creamer Media's Donna Slater
Mineral Resources and Energy Minister Gwede Mantashe

Caterpillar says pandemic hits supply chain, demand

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     27th March 2020 The continued spread of the Covid-19 pandemic is beginning to impact on construction and mining equipment manufacturer Caterpillar's supply chain, a possibility the company previously disclosed in February. The US-based company indicated on Thursday that it was monitoring the situation closely... 

LafargeHolcim warns on profit as coronavirus hits building sector

By: Reuters     27th March 2020 LafargeHolcim ditched its profit forecast for 2020 and announced spending cuts to counter the downturn in construction caused by the coronavirus, the world's biggest cement maker said on Friday, adding it was not planning job cuts for now. The Swiss company said it was trimming capital... 

Dual-purpose building solution benefits mines

By: Halima Frost     27th March 2020 Formwork solution provider Moladi not only offers a fast and effective housing solution to African and South African mines but also uses mining slag as construction material sustainably. The solution entails a reusable, patented, recyclable, lightweight plastic injection moulded formwork system.... 

Dual-purpose building solution benefits mines
TOP FORM The formwork system from Moladi allows for a full structure to be completed in under 24 hours

Various trends shaping Africa’s port infrastructure

By: Tracy Hancock     27th March 2020 The development of inland container terminals, or dry ports, to decongest port traffic is a trend that is gaining significant traction in Africa, says WSP Africa maritime technical director Marthinus Retief. In landlocked Ethiopia, the development of inland dry ports to store containers... 

Various trends shaping  Africa’s port infrastructure
MARTHINUS RETIEF Africa’s ports need to be larger and deeper to accommodate larger vessels to improve their connectivity to global maritime trade

Lack of port development a concern

By: Tracy Hancock     27th March 2020 While there is some movement in the development of South Africa’s port infrastructure by the private sector, the overall stagnation of its development is concerning, law firm Bowmans ports, transport and logistics head Andrew Pike tells Engineering News. He says this lack of activity may largely... 

Lack of port development a concern
ANDREW PIKE The Port of Durban is often congested with trucks that should be transporting up to five or more containers a day but only manage one, if lucky

Iron-ore miner awards contract to group

27th March 2020 Australian ​integrated property and construction group Pindan announced in October that it had been awarded a contract, valued at about A$90-million, to progress construction of an operations village for Rio Tinto’s Koodaideri iron-ore project. The operations village contract comprises the design... 

Iron-ore miner awards contract to group
THE BUILD UP Pindan has progressively been selected for more and more projects in the Pilbara region

R2.8bn staff housing project continues apace

By: Halima Frost     27th March 2020 Platinum group metals mining company Royal Bafokeng Platinum (RBPlat) has to date invested almost R1-billion, of a projected R2.8-billion, in the housing project devised for its staff, in line with its aspirational creed to engage in “More than Mining”. The intention with the housing project is... 

R2.8bn staff housing project continues apace
MORE THAN A HOUSE Royal Bafokeng Platinum continues to uplift its workers by affording them the opportunity to own their own homes

Aveng says all operations in South Africa, some abroad, closed

By: Marleny Arnoldi     26th March 2020 Construction company Aveng has taken various measures aligned with restrictions amid the global Covid-19 outbreak at its operations in South Africa, Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand and Indonesia. “These events are highly complex, present significant uncertainty and... 

Bakwena Corridor in R582m upgrade  

By: Irma Venter     26th March 2020 Bakwena Platinum Corridor Concessionaire (Bakwena) is adding 32 km of a second carriageway on the N4 between the M17 and R512 (Brits Interchange).  The project costs R58-million with a 36-month construction period, and is scheduled to be completed in June next year. 

Bakwena Corridor in R582m upgrade 

Local building sector confidence reaches 20-year low

By: Simone Liedtke     24th March 2020 South Africa’s building sector is expected to contract further in the second quarter. The First National Bank (FNB) and Bureau for Economic Research (BER) Building Confidence Index, had already reached a two-decade low of 13 points in the first quarter of this year, down from 25 points in the... 

Coega signs lease agreement with Eris for Vulindlela Retail Centre

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     23rd March 2020 The Coega Development Corporation (CDC) has signed a lease agreement with Eris Property Group for the development of the Vulindlela Retail Centre in Port Elizabeth. “The agreement marks a significant milestone in the development of the project, which has been in the works for the past year,” said... 

Contractors obliged to provide protection against Covid-19, armed gangs

By: Irma Venter     23rd March 2020 Contractors who fail to implement effective health and safety regulations on their construction sites are placing their workers at serious risk, especially in light of the global Covid-19 pandemic and ongoing invasions by armed gangs who threaten violence unless their employment demands are met,... 

 Contractors obliged to provide protection against Covid-19, armed gangs

JSE-listed Reits delay dividend payments

By: Marleny Arnoldi     23rd March 2020 JSE-listed real estate investment trusts (Reits) Redefine Properties, Hyprop Investments and EPP have announced postponements to the payment of dividends in response to the Covid-19 outbreak. The uncertain and prolonged nature of lockdown-type measures is having negative repercussions all over... 

Murray & Roberts’ earnings unaffected by Covid-19-related halts for now

By: Marleny Arnoldi     20th March 2020 Specialist engineering and construction group Murray & Roberts (M&R) in a statement on Friday said it was still too early to provide an estimate of what the effect of Covid-19 would be on the company’s earnings for the current financial year. As it stands, the impact on its active projects in... 

Collaboration needed in electrical sector

By: Tracy Hancock     20th March 2020 South Africa’s entire electrical sector needs a “shake up” and a lot more collaboration, Electrical Conformance Board of South Africa (ECBSA) MD Peter Pedrick has learnt since taking up his position in May last year. Historically, South Africa was internationally recognised for its effective... 

Collaboration needed in electrical sector
FIRE STARTER There has been a significant rise in fire damage in South Africa over the past ten years amid a lack of regulation policing and governance

Public Works building Beitbridge fence, securing quarantine facilities 

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     19th March 2020 The Department Of Public Works and Infrastructure (DPWI) has undertaken several measures within its mandate, in response to the spread of Covid-19. As part of an ongoing process, the department has identified 37 State-owned properties in various provinces which could possibly be used as... 

Chamber launches Small Business Relief Centre

By: Marleny Arnoldi     19th March 2020 The National Small Business Chamber (NSBC) has launched a Covid-19 Small Business Relief Centre to assist businesses during this crisis. The centre collaborates with experts in various business fields, which should help small businesses weather the storm successfully.  

Cape Town commercial building showcases pioneering use of ecobricks

By: Kim Cloete     19th March 2020 A new building under construction at Cape Town’s V&A Waterfront has become among the first commercial buildings in the world to use ecobrick technology.   Recycled beverage bottles, including the typical ‘Coke’ 2 litre bottles, are being used as ecobricks in the construction of The Ridge, a... 

Balwin expects to report lower full-year earnings, but says sales remain healthy

By: Marleny Arnoldi     18th March 2020 JSE-listed residential real estate investment trust Balwin Properties expects its headline earnings a share for the year ended February 29 to be about 11% lower year-on-year at about 90.5c. The company, which will release its results on or about May 15, on Wednesday informed shareholders that... 

CMF creates contractor advisory centre, assists with contract clarity amid outbreak

By: Marleny Arnoldi     18th March 2020 The Covid-19 outbreak in South Africa has accelerated to 116 confirmed cases by Wednesday morning, out of more than 3 000 people tested for the virus since Sunday, which is increasingly nudging the construction industry to reconsider its “wait-and-see” approach and start implementing impact... 

CMF creates contractor advisory centre, assists with contract clarity amid outbreak

PPC says business is picking up, while intensive DRC restructure talks continue  

By: Marleny Arnoldi     18th March 2020 JSE-listed cement manufacturer PPC on Wednesday said its trading performance in Southern African is starting to stabilise.  In an operational update for the 11 months from April 1, 2019, to February 29, this year, PPC stated that the Southern African businesses had stabilised in terms of cement... 

PPC says business is picking up, while intensive DRC restructure talks continue

Civils sector lifts its head after sharp contraction

By: Irma Venter     17th March 2020 Collectively, in nominal terms, the nine listed contractors on the JSE have lost “a staggering” 80% of their value since before the start of the financial crisis, says construction market intelligence firm Industry Insight senior economist David Metelerkamp. “This is absolute destruction of an... 

Civils sector lifts its head after sharp contraction

Every effort must be made to ensure economy ‘does not grind to a halt’ 

By: Terence Creamer     16th March 2020 Finance Minister Tito Mboweni stressed on Monday that, before contemplating any possible stimulus package to address the negative economic effects of the Covid-19 pandemic, all efforts should be geared towards ensuring that the already weak domestic economy “does not grind to a halt”. A failure... 

Every effort must be made to ensure economy ‘does not grind to a halt’
Photo by Creamer Media's Donna Slater
Finance Minister Tito Mboweni

Arrowhead on track with its disposal programme for the year

By: Marleny Arnoldi     16th March 2020 JSE-listed real estate investment trust Arrowhead Properties has advised that it remains on track with its disposal programme for the financial year ending September 30. The company’s current disposal pipeline includes 42 noncore assets with a sales value of R913-million at an average 1%... 

Arrowhead on track with its disposal programme for the year
Arrowhead Properties CEO Mark Kaplan.

Reits with European properties start implementing contingency measures

By: Marleny Arnoldi     16th March 2020 JSE-listed real estate investment trusts (Reits) EPP and MAS Real Estate have started executing contingency measures following mandatory closures of large shopping centres in various parts of Europe, as governments try to curb the spread of Covid-19. For example, the Polish government signed a... 

Atterbury to develop Aramex South Africa’s new Cape Town facility

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     13th March 2020 Property investor and developer Atterbury has been awarded the contract to develop a new distribution facility for logistics and transportation solutions provider Aramex South Africa in Richmond Park, Milnerton, Cape Town. The development and long-term lease agreement were awarded to Richmond... 

Atterbury to develop Aramex South Africa’s new Cape Town facility
Artist impression of the Aramex facility

Indluplace picks up occupancy in Mpumalanga, continues to sell small properties

By: Marleny Arnoldi     13th March 2020 JSE-listed residential real estate investment trust Indluplace has managed to get its occupancy level at the Highveld View complex, in eMalahleni, Mpumalanga, up to 95%, compared with 33% in February 2019. This is testament to the company’s successful marketing initiatives during a time of... 

Indluplace picks up occupancy in Mpumalanga, continues to sell small properties
Indluplace CEO Carel de Wit

Water ‘crisis’ needs private-sector intervention

By: Darren Parker     13th March 2020 It is essential for the private sector to proactively contribute more towards the upliftment of water infrastructure and services in South Africa, said water engineering company Talbot economist Mike Smith and Talbot strategic director Helen Hulett during a seminar on South Africa’s water... 

Water ‘crisis’ needs private-sector intervention
Photo by Bloomberg
LIGHT AT THE END OF THE TUNNEL If the private sector invests in water infrastructure projects, it can help ensure water security

Water security needs diverse, flexible systems

By: Darren Parker     13th March 2020 As climate change increasingly poses a risk to water security, the flexibility and diversity of bulk water distribution and the effective management of these systems are essential to secure future water supply. “Water security depends on the systems that are in place to manage it. Risk is system... 

Water security needs diverse, flexible systems
Photo by Creamer Media
A SALINE SOLUTION One way of ensuring a guaranteed supply of clean water is through desalination, as is done in Namibia
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