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Economy News

IDC has now extended R3,1bn to firms in distress

By: Terence Creamer     20th September 2010 The Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) had, by the end of August, approved R3,1-billion, through 53 transactions, to support South African companies in distress as a result of the 2009 recession. These transactions, the State-owned development finance institution (DFI) told Engineering... 

Business warns against too big a State role in the economy

By: Creamer Media Reporter      17th September 2010 Business Unity South Africa (Busa) on Friday cautioned against increasing State intervention in the economy, noting that the State has already demonstrated that it has limited capacity to deliver on its existing mandate. In a document released ahead of the African National Congress’ National... 

Govt to double efforts to grow SMMEs – Matona

By: Loni Prinsloo     17th September 2010 South Africa's six-million small, medium and micro-sized enterprises (SMMEs) are keeping one in six people economically active in the country, the FinScope South Africa Small Business Survey 2010 showed on Friday. In total, the sector provides around nine-million employment opportunities and... 

Financial assistance restrictions persist in new Act, lawyers warn

17th September 2010 The new Companies Act (of 2008) may impact negatively on black economic empowerment (BEE) players as the restrictions on financial assistance for the acquisition of company shares are being extended. 

Working towards an updated local aerospace skills strategy

By: Eleanor Seggie     17th September 2010 To determine what aerospace skills are needed in South Africa and to enable tertiary institutions to structure relevant courses to meet the industry’s long-term demands, a well-defined, updated and relevant aerospace sector strategy is needed, says National Aerospace Centre of Excellence (NACoE)... 

Institute focuses on education to secure industry’s future

By: Tracy Hancock     17th September 2010 While there are significant opportunities for individuals prepared to study and excel in the science of refrigeration and air-conditioning, a challenge experienced in the heating, ventilation, air conditioning and refrigeration (HVAC&R) industry is the lack of education, says the South... 

Society prepared for international aerospace symposium

By: Eleanor Seggie     17th September 2010 The International Aerospace Symposium of South Africa (IASSA) 2010 will be held from November 23 to November 25, in Cape Town, and will be convened by the Aeronautical Society of South Africa (AeSSA) and the Flight Test Society of South Africa. 

Technology to feature strongly during education expo

By: Petronel Smit     17th September 2010 Technology in education will be a strong focus at this year’s Education Week Convention and Learning Expo in Johannesburg, with about 1 000 education professionals expected to attend the event from September 28 to 30, 2010. 

Aerospace company advances its footprint

By: Eleanor Seggie     17th September 2010 Aerospace company Denel Aviation, part of the State-owned Denel Group, is embarking on an aggressive marketing strategy to pursue markets beyond South Africa’s borders. 

Afgri mulls further food value chain investments, acquisitions

By: Petronel Smit     17th September 2010 Investments to the value of R56-million in acquisitions and technologies have been made by agricultural services group Afgri in its animal feeds division over the past year as part of its key strategic initiative to expand capacity and grow interest in the local foods sector. 

Food price inflation rears its head once more

By: Petronel Smit     17th September 2010 For the first time in 2010, food and nonalcoholic beverages’ inflation figures were higher than those of the previous month, states the National Agricultural Marketing Council’s (Namc’s) Food Price Monitoring (FPM) report, published in August 2010. 

SA links failure to reform Security Council with financial crisis ahead of UN meet

By: Terence Creamer     16th September 2010 South Africa will directly link the failure to reform key international institutions, including the United Nations (UN) Security Council, with the recent regulatory shortcomings that led to the global financial crisis, during lobbying efforts at the 65th session of the UN General Assembly, which... 

NEF to keep disbursements at R500m-level in FY2011

By: Chanel de Bruyn     16th September 2010 Development finance institution (DFI) the National Empowerment Fund (NEF) plans to maintain its current disbursement rate and would aim to disburse about R500-million to assist and promote business ventures run by black people in the 2011 financial year, chief investment officer Frencel Gillion... 

Unctad warns against reversing stimulus too soon

By: Chanel de Bruyn     14th September 2010 Economies should be careful not to withdraw the financial stimulus packages they had implemented during the recession too soon, as this could potentially lead to a double-dip in the world economy in 2011, United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (Unctad) has warned. In its Trade and... 

Cosatu proposes radical change to SA's economic medicine 

By: Terence Creamer     14th September 2010 South Africa's powerful labour federation the Congress of South African Trade Unions (Cosatu) has provided what it describes as its first felly-fledged "alternative" social and economic policy vision, which is contained in a 120-page discussion document entitled ‘A Growth Path Towards Full... 

Sasol takes R10,5bn currency pain, but cautions on meddling 

By: Terence Creamer     13th September 2010 The strengthening of the South African rand against the US dollar between July 1 last year and June 30 this year, lopped a whopping R10,5-billion off JSE-listed Sasol's operating profit. However, the group remains unconvinced that intervention by the monetary authorities would necessarily yield a... 

Sasol decelerates Project Mafutha pending carbon capture, refinery clarity 

By: Terence Creamer     13th September 2010 Energy and chemicals group Sasol reported on Monday that it had taken its foot off the accelerator at Project Mafutha, a proposed 80 000 bl/d coal-to-liquids (CTL) project in South Africa's Limpopo province. The company, which is led by CEO Pat Davies, said that the project would not "progress... 

International entrepreneurs to visit South African towns 

By: Chanel de Bruyn     10th September 2010 A group of international entrepreneurs will this year reach out to South African entrepreneurs operating outside the mainstream economic centres, and offer them the opportunity to learn from international experience. The Entrepreneurs’ Organisation (EO), which comprises in excess of 7 500... 

Busa says SA’s competitiveness ranking a concern 

By: Creamer Media Reporter      10th September 2010 Business Unity South Africa (Busa) CEO Jerry Vilakazi on Friday expressed concern over South Africa’s drop in the World Economic Forum’s Global Competitiveness Report 2010/11 to a ranking of 54, down from a ranking of 45 the year before. “The deterioration in our performance is a strong reminder... 

Overregulation of steel, economic downturn 
suffocate wire industry

By: Tracy Hancock     10th September 2010 The South African wire industry has been adversely affected by the economic downturn, especially since stadium contracts for the 2010 FIFA World Cup were completed, while the overregulation of the steel industry by government is resulting in the closure of factories and job losses, says South... 

Formalisation of business rescue rules could help lower SA’s liquidation rate

By: Petronel Smit     10th September 2010 The formalisation of new business rescue provisions in legislation in the Companies Act should result in fewer liquidations, contractual certainty and a possible tougher process for obtaining credit. 

East African genset market poised for high growth – report

By: Mary-Anne O’Donnell     10th September 2010 New analysis from business research and consulting firm Frost & Sullivan has found that the East African generator set (genset) market earned revenues of $54,4-million in 2009 and estimates this to reach $212-million in 2014. 

Spotlight on the 
newly elected SAIW president

10th September 2010 University of Pretoria (UP) head for the Department of Materials Science and Metallurgical Engineering Professor Madeleine du Toit has been elected president of the Southern African Institute of Welding (SAIW).  

Swapping guns 
for welding rods

10th September 2010 The first group of 30 Niger Delta welder trainers recently graduated from the Southern African Institute of Welding (SAIW), as international welding practitioners (IWP).  

Institute calls for structured skills development

10th September 2010 Welders need to be trained through a credible programme that delivers the high skill levels required by industry, as all programmes do not do this, Southern African Institute of Welding (SAIW) executive director Jim Guild claims. 

School series boosts computational materials science in Africa

By: Petronel Smit     10th September 2010 The first of the African School series on electronic structure, methods and applications (Asesma), aimed at generating a legacy of computational materials science in Africa by developing a network of African researchers in this field, was hosted by the African Institute for Mathematical Sciences... 

SA slips to position 54 in latest competitiveness ranking

By: Terence Creamer     9th September 2010 South Africa slipped to 54th position from 45th in the World Economic Forum's (WEF's) latest Global Competitiveness Index, but remained the highest ranked country in sub-Saharan Africa - Switzerland continued to top the 2020/11 ranking, followed by Sweden and Singapore. The US, which ceded its... 

Slowdown more pronounced than anticipated, OECD cautions

By: Terence Creamer     9th September 2010 The slowdown in the pace of the global economic recovery is "more pronounced" than previously anticipated, the latest Interim Economic Assessment released by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) states. However, chief economist Pier Carlo Padoan was still of the view... 

SA failed to achieve R&D expenditure target in 2008/9

By: Terence Creamer     9th September 2010 South Africa's ratio of research and development (R&D) expenditure as a percentage of gross domestic product (GDP) remained short of the 1% national target set for 2008/9, having declined for the second year in succession to 0,92%, the latest national survey on research and experimental... 

Seta system here to stay, Nzimande tells skills conference 

By: Chanel de Bruyn     9th September 2010 The Sector Education and Training Authority (Seta) sector was here to stay and would not be scrapped, Higher Education and Training Minister Blade Nzimande asserted on Thursday. He said during the National Skills Summit that Seta's would remain a "central cog" of the country's skills development... 

Eskom gets set to open bidding process for 1 025 MW of renewables

By: Terence Creamer     7th September 2010 The single buyer office (SBO) within State-owned power utility Eskom expects to initiate a selection process in October or November for the 1 025 MW of renewable energy that is earmarked for entry into the South African electricity system by 2013. SBO head Yousuf Haffejee has told potential... 

SA a top 20 priority global investment destination - Unctad survey

By: Terence Creamer     6th September 2010 South Africa ranks nineteenth in a league table of "top priority host economies" for foreign direct investment (FDI), which was released on Monday as part of the latest ‘World Investment Prospects Survey 2010-2012' compiled by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (Unctad) -... 

Business confidence rise signals SA recovery ‘on track'

By: Terence Creamer     6th September 2010 South Africa's business confidence in the third quarter rose to its highest level in two-and-a-half years, or the period shortly before the onset of the global financial crisis, the latest survey by Rand Merchant Bank (RMB) and the Bureau for Economic Research (BER) shows. The third quarter... 

Cartel in tyre industry uncovered

By: Sapa     6th September 2010 The Competition Commission investigation has uncovered a cartel in the tyre manufacturing industry, it said on Monday. In a statement, the commission said it had referred a complaint of collusive tendering, price fixing, information exchange and market allocation to the Competition Tribunal. 

Nzimande calls for transformation of FET colleges  

By: Loni Prinsloo     3rd September 2010 Higher Education and Training Minister Blade Nzimande on Friday called for some amendments and additions in the curriculum of Further Education and Training (FET) colleges to absorb the country's desolate youth into its workforce and address the high unemployment rate in South Africa.... 

As SA cities weigh their 2020 Olympic options, scepticism abounds

By: Petronel Smit     3rd September 2010 In the aftermath of hosting a successful R30-billion FIFA World Cup, some South Africa cities are said to be fired up to bid for the 2020 Summer Olympic Games, which could require investments of more than R40-billion. 

Project management key for career growth

By: Andrew Gillingham     3rd September 2010 Project management is a discipline that engineers and other professionals neglect at their peril as the personal costs and the potential penalties can be significant. On the other side of the coin, good project management skills can take careers onto a faster track. 


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