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Covid-19

Bleak outlook for South Africa’s unemployment rate − Schussler

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     28th August 2020 The Covid-19 pandemic and the months of lockdown have had an immense negative impact on economies worldwide, with entire industries forced to close their doors, affecting millions of  workers who either lost their income for weeks on end or lost their jobs altogether, economist Mike Schussler... 

Fin find to conduct SMME survey to gauge Covid-19 impact

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     28th August 2020 Fin find, which provides online access to finance solutions for small, medium-sized and microenterprises (SMMEs), has partnered with industry organisation Business Leadership South Africa (BLSA), government and other stakeholders to conduct a comprehensive study on the impact of the Covid-19... 

OR Tambo International Airport expects passenger numbers to significantly increase next month

By: Rebecca Campbell     28th August 2020 OR Tambo International Airport (OR Tambo) will probably handle more than 210 000 passengers next month. That is the estimate of the airport’s management. The currently operating airlines have booked more than 2 500 take-off and landing slots at the airport (which is owned and operated by the... 

SA small business turnover up 9 pct after govt eases Covid-19 restrictions

By: African News Agency      28th August 2020 The further relaxation of Covid-19 restrictions by South Africa's government to allow more economic activity to resume after a nationwide lockdown has led to a nine percent improvement in turnover among small and medium enterprises, a survey released on Friday showed. small business financial... 

 SA small business turnover up 9 pct after govt eases Covid-19 restrictions

South Africa says no extra money available for next three years 

By: Bloomberg     28th August 2020 South Africa’s National Treasury says there are no additional resources available for government departments in the next three years. Any additional allocations will have to be funded from reductions in other programs, either within the department’s budget, or from another department’s budget,... 

South Africa says no extra money available for next three years

High-flying Northam shrugs off Covid to achieve record year 

By: Martin Creamer     28th August 2020 Platinum group metals mining company Northam Platinum has shrugged off the Covid-19 pandemic to report a record financial year in the 12 months to June 30. The JSE-listed company, headed by CEO Paul Dunne, on Friday reported its best ever revenue of R17.8-billion, record operating profit of... 

High-flying Northam shrugs off Covid to achieve record year
Photo by Creamer Media
Paul Dunne

Most insurers still reluctant to pay tourist business interruption claims, despite some relief

By: Rebecca Campbell     28th August 2020 Public loss adjustment company Insurance Claims Africa (ICA) has reported that, while more major insurance companies are now offering interim relief payments to smaller businesses in the tourism and hospitality sector, larger such businesses were still excluded from the payments. These interim... 

Redflank launches BeyondCOVID initiative to build business resilience  

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     27th August 2020 Specialist management company Redflank on August 27 launched the BeyondCOVID initiative, which aims to help businesses in the country "embrace solidarity and survive the impact of Covid-19", by shaping their responses to challenges and opportunities presented by the pandemic and setting them up... 

Redflank launches BeyondCOVID initiative to build business resilience
BeyondCOVID cofounder Lings Naidoo outlines the initiative and how people can contribute.

Sibanye prides itself in having the 'rock star' metals of the moment  

By: Martin Creamer     27th August 2020 Precious metals company Sibanye-Stillwater on Thursday highlighted its exposure to what are being referenced across mining jurisdictions as the ‘rock star’ commodities of the moment, in a Covid-19 and climate-struck world. After presenting 718%-higher half-year earnings and announcing the... 

Sibanye prides itself in having the 'rock star' metals of the moment
Sibanye-Stillwater half-year results covered by Mining Weekly’s Martin Creamer. Video: Darlene Creamer

M&R pursuing open-pit services acquisition as it seeks ‘step-change’ growth in mining 

By: Terence Creamer     27th August 2020 Engineering and construction group Murray & Roberts (M&R) is considering acquisition targets in the open-pit mining services sector, where it is aiming to expand the presence of its mining platform, which has hitherto had an underground mining focus. CEO Henry Laas says that, although the... 

M&R pursuing open-pit services acquisition as it seeks ‘step-change’ growth in mining

Sibanye-Stillwater earnings soar 718%, R1.3bn dividend declared 

By: Martin Creamer     27th August 2020 Precious metals mining company Sibanye-Stillwater has reported sensational half-year results on Covid-defying increased production from all operating segments The Johannesburg- and New York-listed company, headed by CEO Neal Froneman, has declared a R1.3-billion interim dividend on free cash... 

Sibanye-Stillwater earnings soar 718%, R1.3bn dividend declared
Photo by Creamer Media's Donna Slater
Neal Froneman

Minerals Council says morality must be put at forefront of recovery, growth

By: Marleny Arnoldi     27th August 2020 The Minerals Council South Africa has implored President Cyril Ramaphosa and law enforcement authorities to act urgently against those within government, business and other citizens who have looted public funds, incluing those intended to alleviate the impact of Covid-19. This plea by the... 

Minerals Council says morality must be put at forefront of recovery, growth
Minerals Council CEO Roger Baxter

France donates R1.8m worth of medical equipment to South Africa

By: Sane Dhlamini     27th August 2020 The French government has donated R1.8-million worth of medical material and personal protective equipment to South Africa, which will be distributed to hospitals in the Northern Cape, North West, Limpopo and Mpumalanga. The donation comes at the request of the South African government as part of... 

France donates R1.8m worth of medical equipment to South Africa

Nzimande condemns students who submit false information to obtain NSFAS funding

By: Yvonne Silaule     26th August 2020 The National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) has removed 5 000 students from its list of beneficiaries. Higher Education, Science and Innovation Minister Dr Blade Nzimande on August 26 said the 5 000 students were provided with funding support, but had provided inaccurate information for the... 

Treasury goes live with info on State Covid-19 procurement contracts

By: Marleny Arnoldi     26th August 2020 The Presidency on August 26 confirmed that all Covid-19-related government expenditure has been published online. The Office of the Chief Procurement Officer has published a full list of all companies who have been awarded contracts by government for the supply of goods and services relating to... 

M&R retreats into a loss amid R622m Covid-19 hit 

By: Terence Creamer     26th August 2020 Engineering and construction group Murray & Roberts (M&R) estimates that the Covid-19 pandemic had a R622-million negative impact on its results for the 2020 financial year, during which the company retreated into a lossmaking position. The JSE-listed group reported a loss before interest and tax... 

M&R retreats into a loss amid R622m Covid-19 hit

UIF lifts delay of Covid TERS benefit payments

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     26th August 2020 The Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF) has resumed payment of Covid-19 Temporary Employer/Employee Relief Scheme (TERS) benefits after a 24-hour delay which was necessitated by the need to address some control deficiencies in the Covid TERS online payment system. This is the usual step where, if... 

Digital finance can deliver long-term financing of SDGs, UN report says

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     26th August 2020 The unprecedented social and economic crisis caused by the Covid-19 pandemic has put a spotlight on the role of digital finance in providing relief for millions around the world, supporting businesses and protecting jobs and livelihoods. While the pandemic demonstrates the immediate benefits of... 

ICA notes slow progress in Business Interruption claims process ahead of court case

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     26th August 2020 There has been slow progress on the Covid-19 Business Interruption claims process ahead of the September 1 court case, specialist loss adjustment firm Insurance Claims Africa (ICA) noted during a webinar on August 26. The company is representing more than 700 clients in the tourism and... 

Bidcorp revenue declines as a result of Covid-19 measures 

By: Donna Slater     26th August 2020 Food distribution company Bidcorp recorded net revenue of R121.1-billion for the financial year ended June 30, representing a 6.3% decline from the R129.3-billion in revenue reported for the 2019 financial year. Its gross profit margin, however, increased to 24.1%, up from 23.9% in the 2019... 

Bidcorp revenue declines as a result of Covid-19 measures
Bidcorp operations and financial performance impacted by Covid-19-hit consumer markets

DTIC, Wesgro to host virtual wine mission to South Korea

By: Creamer Media Reporter      26th August 2020 To enhance bilateral trade and investment ties, the Department of Trade, Industry and Competition (DTIC) will, in collaboration with trade promotion agency Wesgro, host a virtual wine mission to South Korea. The event, to be held on August 27, will showcase ten wineries from the Western Cape region. 

High-flying DRDGold expecting nigh sevenfold earnings rocket 

By: Martin Creamer     26th August 2020 Surface gold mining company DRDGold is expecting half-year earnings per share to rocket nearly sevenfold. In a trading statement released on Wednesday, the company, headed by CEO Niël Pretorius, indicated earnings per share of 82.5 c for the financial year to June 30, compared with 11.8 c for the... 

High-flying DRDGold expecting nigh sevenfold earnings rocket
Tailings dumps from which DRDGold recovers gold.

South African business, labour leaders hammer out recovery plan

By: Bloomberg     26th August 2020 South African business, labour union and government leaders have given themselves ten days to agree on a recovery plan before presenting it to President Cyril Ramaphosa, people familiar with the situation said. A select group of leaders met under the auspices of the National Economic Development... 

South African business, labour leaders hammer out recovery plan

Adcock Ingram reports satisfying results despite headwinds

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     26th August 2020 Pharmaceutical manufacturer the Adcock Ingram Group posted headline earnings from continuing operations of R709.4-million for the financial year ended June 30. This was an increase on the headline earnings of R701-million posted for the 2019 financial year. 

B4SA disappointed at TERS payment suspension

By: Donna Slater     26th August 2020 Business for South Africa (B4SA) is disappointed that all payments of Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF) Temporary Employer/Employee Relief Scheme (TERS) benefits have been halted pending investigations by the Auditor-General (AG). It is understood that the AG is investigating system integrity... 

Interprovincial travel allowed, four more airports to reopen, says Mbalula

By: News24Wire      25th August 2020 Transport Minister Fikile Mbalula announced on Tuesday that four more airports have been permitted to operate under Level 2 travel regulations. A total of 18 airports are now be able to operate. 

Africa Prize selects 2020 finalists ahead of virtual event

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     25th August 2020 A more affordable, effective cervical cancer screening device, a digital platform to help farmers plan and distribute crops, a new way to secure banking through facial recognition, and a tool that monitors the condition of solar photovoltaic (PV) installations are the four innovations selected as... 

DEFF revokes emergency directive for Karpowership

By: Donna Slater     25th August 2020 The Department of Environment, Forestry and Fisheries (DEFF) has revoked a Section 30A directive granted to Turkish power ship operator Karpowership for activities linked to the emergency generation of electricity. When Karpowership initially submitted its request, the company indicated that... 

Agile businesses most likely to weather pandemic well, PwC study shows

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     25th August 2020 More than 50% of Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) private business respondents expect revenue to decline in the coming months, professional services firm PwC’s EMEA Private Business Survey shows. Respondents believe that taking a strategic approach to resilience and operating sustainably... 

Third of labour force let go – Master Drilling  

By: Martin Creamer     25th August 2020 The Covid-19 crisis resulted in drilling company Master Drilling having to let go a third of its labour force in the world, Master Drilling CEO Danie Pretorius said on Tuesday. Fochville-based Master Drilling provides drilling services to the mining, civil engineering and building construction... 

Third of labour force let go – Master Drilling
Master Drilling half-year results covered by Mining Weekly’s Martin Creamer. Video: Darlene Creamer.

Health Minister Zweli Mkhize confirms Covid-19 antibody tests are now legal 

By: News24Wire      25th August 2020 The National Department of Health has confirmed that antibody testing is now legal in South Africa. On Monday evening, Health Minister Zweli Mkhize announced: "Today I am pleased to announce that the director-general for health has issued guidelines for the use of SARS CoV 2 antibody tests and... 

Health Minister Zweli Mkhize confirms Covid-19 antibody tests are now legal
Health Minister Zweli Mkhize

Covid-19 disruptions cut global steel production

By: Donna Slater     25th August 2020 Global crude steel production for the 64 countries reporting to the World Steel Association (worldsteel) was 2.5% lower year-on-year at 152.7-million tonnes in July. Worldsteel notes that because of the ongoing difficulties presented by the Covid-19 pandemic, many of July's figures are estimates... 

Solidarity Fund delivers first batch of ventilators to hospitals

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     25th August 2020 The Solidarity Fund reports that the first batch of ventilators, initially earmarked for delivery at the end of August, have been delivered ahead of schedule. In early July, the fund approved the additional funding of R405-million to go towards the purchase of critical healthcare equipment for... 

Master Drilling’s net half-year operating cash up 100% 

By: Martin Creamer     25th August 2020 Net cash generated from operating activities in the six months to June 30 increased 100% to $11.1-million amid unprecedented Covid-19 disruptions, drilling services company Master Drilling reported on Tuesday The Johannesburg Stock Exchange-listed company, headed by CEO Danie Pretorius, provides... 

Master Drilling’s net half-year operating cash up 100%
Photo by Creamer Media's Donna Slater
Master Drilling CEO Danie Pretorius

Covid-19 impacts business landscape in the steel manufacturing industry, says Macsteel

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     24th August 2020 African manufacturer, merchandiser and distributor of steel and value-added products Macsteel is planning to leverage on technology to sustain its business growth as part of its post-Covid-19 business continuity plan. This after the spread of Covid-19 created business disruption around the world,... 

Covid-19 impacts business landscape in the steel manufacturing industry, says Macsteel
Nival Porun

TIPS Tracker: The economy and the pandemic

24th August 2020 Trade and Industrial Policy Strategies' (TIPS's) 'Tracker: The economy and the pandemic' highlights important trends in the Covid-19 pandemic in South Africa and how they affect the economy. The number of reported new cases fell to an average of 3 350 a day in the week to 23 August, from a peak... 

Transnet signals intent to support domestic manufacture of rail despite global tender 

By: Terence Creamer     24th August 2020 State-owned freight logistics group Transnet has signalled its intention to support the localisation of rail manufacture, but is simultaneously proceeding with a global tender for the supply of 60 kg a metre of head hardened rail, which it describes as an interim solution for meeting its... 

Transnet signals intent to support domestic manufacture of rail despite global tender
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