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Covid-19

'You are ready and getting readier' – Ramaphosa is pleased with Mpumalanga's Covid-19 plans

By: News24Wire      Updated 1 hour 55 minutes ago Conducting an oversight visit in Mpumalanga on Friday, President Cyril Ramaphosa said he was pleased with the plans the province has put in place to deal with Covid-19, especially as infections are expected to rise. As of 2 July, Mpumalanga had 1 478 confirmed cases of Covid-19, one of the... 

Ramaphosa says coronavirus forums will be rolled out countrywide

By: Yvonne Silaule     Updated 2 hours 5 minutes ago President Cyril Ramaphosa on July 3 said coronavirus forums would be rolled out nationwide and commended the Mpumalanga province for establishing the first such forums. “I commend the Mpumalanga province for establishing coronavirus forums. It is a new approach and it is fantastic coming from the... 

Mpumalanga develops ‘pillared strategy’ to curb Covid-19 spread

By: Yvonne Silaule     Updated 2 hours 59 minutes ago With Mpumalanga coronavirus infections projected to peak in the latter part of July, the province has developed a pillared strategy to alleviate the spread of the virus. The number of Covid-19 infections in the province is currently at 1 478. Mpumalanga Premier Refilwe Mtshweni-Tshipane said the... 

Mpumalanga develops ‘pillared strategy’ to curb Covid-19 spread

Alstom launches new Mastria mobility orchestration solution

By: Schalk Burger     Updated 3 hours ago Transport and rail multinational Alstom has launched a new version of multimodal supervision and mobility orchestration solution Mastria, which uses artificial intelligence (AI) to provide operators and transport authorities with enhanced passenger flow management tools. The solution allows... 

ECSA suspends four Satellite Centres in light of Covid-19 

By: Simone Liedtke     Updated 3 hours ago The Covid-19 pandemic has challenged and shifted the premise upon which the Engineering Council of South Africa’s (ECSA’s) Satellite Centres were introduced, leading to the suspension these four centres, says ECSA acting strategic services executive Millicent Kabwe. In email correspondence to... 

Sasol narrows immediate asset-disposal focus to ‘top ten’ list 

By: Terence Creamer     Updated 3 hours ago Chemicals and energy group Sasol has developed a list of ten major assets that will be prioritised for sale in the coming weeks and months as it moves to streamline the business into what is being termed ‘Sasol 2.0’, while also raising proceeds to help it reduce a $9.5-billion debt burden. In... 

Sasol narrows immediate asset-disposal focus to ‘top ten’ list
Photo by Creamer Media
Sasol CFO Paul Victor

Groceries, household supplies and utility bills top international list of higher cost items

By: Simone Liedtke     Updated 3 hours ago The majority of people across 26 surveyed countries say the overall cost of food, goods and services have increased for them and their families since the Covid-19 pandemic started, according to a global survey by market research company Ipsos. Three in five people (60%) in an online poll of... 

Capacity development, training continues with virtual meetings

By: Schalk Burger     Updated 4 hours ago Professional development nonprofit organisation The South Africa Road Federation (SARF) is delivering ten accredited courses using Microsoft Teams during July and August, with planning for courses later in the year also under way, SARF operations director Basil Jonsson says. South Africa’s road... 

Tribunal confirms two more consent agreements for excessive pricing

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     Updated 5 hours ago The Competition Tribunal has confirmed two further consent agreements relating to Covid-19 excessive pricing complaints. This brings the total number of consent agreements, confirmed as orders of the tribunal since April to 20. 

Greater drone deployability in Africa requires regulatory allowances, supply chain integration

By: Donna Slater     Updated 6 hours ago Drones are being successfully deployed to support medical and humanitarian projects across Africa, but for a greater, more sustainable impact, they will need to be fully integrated into supply chains within an enabling regulatory environment, according to panellists who spoke during a webinar on... 

Mapasa says BRL business rescue proceeding well despite some challenges 

By: Simone Liedtke     3rd July 2020 Progress is being made with the implementation of the business rescue plan of embattled construction company Basil Read Limited (BRL), a subsidiary of Basil Read Holdings Limited (BRHL), “despite challenges”, Basil Read CEO Khathutshelo (K2) Mapasa tells Engineering News.. BRL operates in the... 

Mapasa says BRL business rescue proceeding well despite some challenges
CEO Khathutshelo (K2) Mapasa

Motus to cull 40% of rental fleet as Covid-19 takes toll

By: Irma Venter     3rd July 2020 Automotive group Motus will reduce its vehicle rental fleet by 40% and close 20 sites within its rental business, says CEO Osman Arbee. Motus operates the Europcar and Tempest vehicle hire brands, operating through 100 car rental outlets in South Africa and 17 outlets in neighbouring countries. 

Pandemic severely impacting on tourism, but there are positives, says WHO

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     2nd July 2020 The Covid-19 pandemic has had a massive impact on tourism and travel in Africa; however, there are opportunities for the tourism sector in the medium term, and potential for recovery as borders start reopening, speakers said during a World Health Organisation- (WHO-) hosted webinar on July 2. WHO... 

Covid kills 13 mineworkers, no foreigners back at work  

By: Martin Creamer     2nd July 2020 Thirteen mineworkers have now succumbed to the coronavirus, Minerals Council South Africa public affairs and transformation senior executive Tebello Chabana said on Thursday. Of the 13 who have died, seven were employed in platinum mining in North West province, which has the most cases at 1 413... 

Covid kills 13 mineworkers, no foreigners back at work
Minerals Council South Africa Covid update covered by Mining Weekly’s Martin Creamer. Video: Darlene Creamer.

Proudly SA launches new ‘buy local’ campaign

By: Simone Liedtke     2nd July 2020 Proudly South African (SA) this week launched its new “Buy Local” consumer education campaign that will go live on various platforms, including television, on July 3. The campaign calls on all South African citizens to contribute to putting the local economy and South Africans back to work by... 

Air transport body calls on African and Middle Eastern governments to end quarantine

By: Rebecca Campbell     2nd July 2020 The global representative body of the airline industry, the International Air Transport Association (Iata), has called on African and Middle Eastern (AME) governments to abandon quarantine measures for arriving air passengers. These policies were doing grave damage to those countries’ aviation... 

ProfitShare Partners secures R100m for SMEs

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     2nd July 2020 Fintech small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) capital provider ProfitShare Partners on July 2 announced that it had secured R100-million from the SA SME Fund, which would enable it to partner with more SME businesses to provide much-needed capital to catalyse growth. In the midst of the... 

Nersa to provide concurrence on technology-specific determination this month 

By: Terence Creamer     2nd July 2020 The National Energy Regulator of South Africa indicated on Thursday that it intended providing concurrence this month for a Ministerial determination that would open the way for the procurement of new electricity generation capacity in line with allocations contained in the 2019 edition of the... 

Nersa to provide concurrence on technology-specific determination this month

Pikitup shuts two depots following spike in Covid-19 cases

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     2nd July 2020 The City of Johannesburg’s waste management entity Pikitup has received confirmation that a further 30 employees at the Roodepoort depot have tested positive for Covid-19, taking the total number of employees infected by the virus to 45. The Roodepoort depot was initially closed on June 15 when... 

UIF continues to accept Covid-19 TERS claims

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     2nd July 2020 The Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF) Commissioner has indicated that the fund will continue to accept and process Covid-19 Temporary Employer/Employee Relief Scheme (TERS) claims submitted for April, May and June as per the directive issued by Employment and Labour Minister Thulas Nxesi on March... 

Top 100 companies' value dropped by 15% by March, report shows

By: Schalk Burger     2nd July 2020 The Global Top 100 companies performed strongly from March to December 2019, increasing their market capitalisation (cap) by 20%. However, their market cap decreased by 15% from December 2019 to March 2020, a report compiled by professional services multinational PwC shows. These top 100... 

Construction Index tracks down, hopes for recovery pinned in infrastructure build

By: Schalk Burger     2nd July 2020 While JSE-listed industrial and construction materials company Afrimat's Construction Index (ACI) was down by 12 points year-on-year in the first quarter of this year, there is some hope of a recovery for the construction sector in government’s infrastructure-led economic growth recovery plan... 

Hydrogen-powered aviation preparing for takeoff – study 

By: Martin Creamer     2nd July 2020 Hydrogen as an energy source will play a key role in transforming aviation into a zero-carbon/climate-neutral system over the next few decades, an independent study states in estimating that the first short-range hydrogen-powered demonstrator could be developed by 2028 if sufficient investments... 

Hydrogen-powered aviation preparing for takeoff – study
Strong steps being taken to clean up the skies by using hydrogen to power aircraft.

TFR implementing new online truck scheduling system at City Deep Terminal

By: Simone Liedtke     2nd July 2020 Transnet Freight Rail (TFR) will implement the Navis Truck Appointment System at its City Deep Terminal in Johannesburg from July 6. The online truck scheduling system will not only regulate the flow of trucks to the terminal, but will also enable physical distancing during the Covid-19 pandemic. 

Global efforts needed to fast-track clean energy innovation

By: Simone Liedtke     2nd July 2020 A significant and concerted global push to accelerate innovation will be needed to pave the way to the energy sector reaching net-zero emissions, according to International Energy Agency’s (IEA’s) Energy Technology Perspectives (ETP) Special Report on Clean Energy Innovation. The report discusses... 

Local medical radioisotope producer continues exports despite lockdown

By: Rebecca Campbell     2nd July 2020 South African Nuclear Energy Corporation (Necsa) subsidiary company NTP Radioisotopes (NTP) has reported that, since the imposition of South Africa’s national lockdown in late March, it had been able to dispatch more than 120 shipments of medical radioisotopes to customers around the world. Both... 

RBPlat opens 200-bed field hospital to support govt in fight against Covid-19 

By: Simone Liedtke     1st July 2020 Platinum group metals miner Royal Bafokeng Platinum (RBPlat), together with the North West Department of Health, has officially opened the 200-bed Royal Bafokeng Platinum Field Hospital, in Rustenburg, at a cost of about R10-million, to support government’s already overburdened resources in the... 

RBPlat opens 200-bed field hospital to support govt in fight against Covid-19

Easing lockdown lifts South Africa's Absa PMI in June

By: Reuters     1st July 2020 South Africa's seasonally-adjusted Absa Purchasing Managers' Index (PMI) expanded in June as an easing of coronavirus restrictions lifted business activity and sales. The index, which gauges manufacturing activity in Africa's most industrialised economy, rose to 53.9 points in June from 50.2... 

Covid-19 had ‘significant impact’ on Long4Life’s businesses

By: Simone Liedtke     1st July 2020 The outbreak of the Covid-19 virus and subsequent government prescribed lockdown has had a significant impact on JSE-listed lifestyle investment company Long4Life’s various businesses, CEO Brian Joffe told shareholders during an annual general meeting (AGM) on July 1. The requirement to close all... 

Insurers’ rejection of Covid-19 claims severely impacting tourism, hospitality sectors 

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     1st July 2020 The South African tourism and hospitality sector has been “decimated” by the Covid-19 pandemic and subsequent lockdown, and jobs and businesses are at risk owing to insurance companies continuing to reject claims related to the Covid-19 pandemic. This was indicated by specialist public loss... 

Insurers’ rejection of Covid-19 claims severely impacting tourism, hospitality sectors
Insurance Claims Africa CEO Ryan Woolley provides an overview and update of the process of Insurance Claims Africa’s acting on behalf of almost 500 claimants in the tourism and hospitality sector, against a number of large insurers who are rejecting business interruption claims related to the Covid-19 pandemic

ELB’s delisting-linked offers send up share price

By: Martin Creamer     1st July 2020 The board of directors of ELB on Wednesday made delisting-linked offer to its shareholders, which saw its share price rise. By late afternoon, the JSE-listed company’s price had risen by 54.17% to R1.85 a share. The capital equipment and engineering solutions group proposed a transaction to... 

ELB’s delisting-linked offers send up share price
Photo by Creamer Media
Gamsberg zinc mine project in the Northern Cape, where ELB Engineering Services was active.

Policy uncertainty in South Africa remains high, implementation risks remain

By: Schalk Burger     1st July 2020 The North West University (NWU) Business School's quarterly Policy Uncertainty Index (PUI) remained high at 57.4% in the second quarter of the year, an improvement on the 59.8% during the first quarter of the year. It remains at the highest levels since the PUI was launched in early 2016,  notes... 

Airbus announces widespread job cuts to deal with effects of Covid-19 crisis

By: Rebecca Campbell     1st July 2020 Europe-based global major aerospace group Airbus announced at the end of June that it was going to have to cut 15 000 jobs over the next 12 months – from now until the northern summer of 2021 – and resize the operations of its commercial aircraft business. These steps were being taken to meet the... 

Airbus announces widespread job cuts to deal with effects of Covid-19 crisis
Photo by Airbus
Members of all Airbus’ current airliner families in flight – from front to rear: an A220-300, an A319neo, an A330neo, an A350-1000, a Beluga transport (developed for Airbus’ own use) and an A380

Arnot OpCo concludes Section 189 process affecting 1 100 employees

By: Martin Creamer     1st July 2020 Coal mining company Arnot OpCo has completed a Section 189 process, affecting 1 100 of its employees. Exxaro Resources in February entered into a transfer-of-business agreement with Arnot OpCo, transferring all its assets and liabilities to Arnot OpCo as a going concern. 

Arnot OpCo concludes Section 189 process affecting 1 100 employees
Arnot OpCo CEO Bontle Aphane

R10m Covid testing lab unveiled at De Beers' Venetia diamond mine

By: Martin Creamer     1st July 2020 De Beers Venetia Mine has unveiled a R10-million coronavirus testing laboratory that will be used to check the diamond mines’ employees and contractors for Covid-19. Discussion with the Department of Health is also under way on assisting with the government’s screening efforts in the mine’s... 

R10m Covid testing lab unveiled at De Beers' Venetia diamond mine
Limpopo MEC of Health Dr Phophi Ramathuba (left) and De Beers Group Managed Operations MD Mpumi Zikalala (right).

Platinum group metals in pole position to benefit from global decarbonisation thrust  

By: Martin Creamer     1st July 2020 Platinum group metals are in pole position to benefit from the fast-growing global decarbonisation momentum, Mining Weekly can today report. A multiplicity of global announcements are emerging daily that inextricably link platinum-catalysed hydrogen fuel cells as well as platinum-catalysed... 

Platinum group metals in pole position to benefit from global decarbonisation thrust
AP Ventures founding partner Kevin Eggers interviewed by Mining Weekly’s Martin Creamer. Video: Darlene Creamer.

Economic opportunity of South Africa’s energy transition akin to new ‘gold rush’

By: Terence Creamer     30th June 2020 South Africa’s energy transition from coal to cleaner energy carries an economic opportunity equivalent to the discovery of gold in the country more than a century ago, a new South African National Energy Association (Sanea) report argues. Published on June 30, the ‘South African Energy Risk... 

Economic opportunity of South Africa’s energy transition akin to new ‘gold rush’
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