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Economy News

State-owned defence group to pay trade union millions in salary arrears 

By: Rebecca Campbell     17th September 2021 Trade union Solidarity announced on Friday that financially-embattled State-owned defence industrial group Denel had just paid it R4-million. The money is to cover the salary arrears of union members employed by Denel Dynamics and Denel Land Systems. “The payment of the salary money to Solidarity... 

Vaccination 'passport' not introduced to punish S Africans – Health Minister 

By: Sane Dhlamini     17th September 2021 Minister of Health Dr Joe Phaahla stressed on Friday that the vaccination certificate touted by government is not being introduced to punish South Africans but rather to protect each other against the Covid-19 virus. Following President Cyril Ramaphosa’s address last Sunday many South Africans... 

South African Minister of Health Dr Joe Phaahla
Minister of Health Dr Joe Phaahla

Competition Tribunal approves Growthpoint, Feenstra Group merger

By: Simone Liedtke     17th September 2021 The Competition Tribunal has unconditionally approved the large merger whereby Growthpoint Properties will acquire Joburg Stay from Feenstra Group.   This transaction involves an internal reorganisation of the Feenstra Group. As such, the target firms are Joburg Stay, seven Gauteng student... 

New online portal launched to showcase African green recovery projects

By: Terence Creamer     17th September 2021 A new web-based platform, which will showcase green stimulus projects across Africa, has been officially launched. The portal, which can be found at http://agsp.nepad.org/, was unveiled this week by South Africa’s Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment Minister Barbara Creecy in her capacity as... 

A photo of a solar farm

Aftermarket guidelines beneficial to automotive industry

By: Darren Parker     17th September 2021 Competition Commission South Africa’s Automotive Aftermarket Guidelines, which came into effect in July, after being published in January, can be “hugely beneficial to motorists”, says tyre manufacturer and distributor Sumitomo Rubber South Africa CEO Lubin Ozoux. “However, consumers still have a... 

A photo of tyre stock inside Sumitomo Rubber South Africa’s Ladysmith plant in KwaZulu-Natal
WORKING TIRELESSLY After being looted in July, Sumitomo Rubber South Africa has tried to minimise the impact on dealers

Covid-19 vaccinations can be made mandatory

By: Khutso Maphatsoe     17th September 2021 Owing to the latest guidelines provided by the Department of Employment and Labour, which stipulates that Covid-19 vaccinations can be made mandatory by employers, companies would need to update their policies and procedures to ensure that they comply with the guidelines, which correspond with... 

Optimism prevails despite downturn

By: Darren Parker     17th September 2021 Despite setbacks caused by Covid-19, and the riots and looting in July, tyre manufacturer and distributor Sumitomo Rubber South Africa is optimistic about the sustainability of the local tyre market. Several new products have been launched over the past few months, particularly in the Dunlop... 

 A photo of the Dunlop Grandtrek AT3G two-ply white lettering tyre on a SUV
THEY SEE ME ROLLING Sumitomo Rubber South Africa launched the Dunlop Grandtrek AT3G two-ply white lettering tyre in June

New Merseta chamber to positively impact on sector

By: Darren Parker     17th September 2021 The creation of an automotive component manufacturers chamber at the Manufacturing, Engineering and Related Services Sector Education and Training Authority (Merseta) has been a “game changer”, says National Association of Automotive Component and Allied Manufacturers (NAACAM) executive director... 

A photo of a worker handling automotive components in a factory
Photo by Bloomberg
PLAYING ITS PART The creation of an automotive component manufacturing specific chamber at the Merseta enables this subsector to deal with its own unique skills issues

Reskilling programme for retrenched workers completes first run

By: Darren Parker     17th September 2021 The final intake of learners for the maiden year of the Road to Reskilling training programme is set to take place later this month in Gqeberha, in the Eastern Cape. The programme was conceived as a means of reskilling and recapacitating 300 previously retrenched workers in the automotive... 

A photo of a high-tech automotive manufacturing facility and workers
MITIGATING THE IMPACT The Road to Reskilling programme was borne out of the need to reduce the impact of anticipated retrenchments from Covid-19

Successful year for initiative

By: Darren Parker     17th September 2021 The Automotive Supply Chain Competitiveness Initiative (ASCCI) World Class Manufacturing (WCM) programme has enjoyed a high level of participation over the past 12 months and is on track to complete 21 projects by the end of the year, National Association of Automotive Component and Allied... 

 A photo of a pair of safety gloves resting on a skip filled with steel automotive components
LOCAL IS LEKKER Localisation requires commercial competitiveness founded on skilled and knowledgeable personnel

Brain drain must not dissuade development

By: Darren Parker     17th September 2021 To foster a sustainable automotive component manufacturing sector in South Africa, the risk of locally developed skills being poached by other countries must be accepted without dissuading development, says education and training services provider Tetelestai Holdings CEO Natalie Nelson.... 

A close-up photo of precision tooling in action with sparks flying
Photo by Adobe
BRIGHT SPARKS The National Tooling Initiative Programme has begun a targeted apprenticeship that funds 15 learners in the toolmaking trade

Initiative advances TVET system

By: Darren Parker     17th September 2021 Following its initial launch in March last year, skills development initiative High Gear and its partners are launching several technical vocational education and training (TVET) curricula upgrades over the next six months. The High Gear initiative is a collaboration between the National... 

A photo young black men and women being trained by an older white man in an automotive component manufacturing facility
PASSING THE TORCH The improved skills pipeline enabled by High Gear will contribute towards the automotive components manufacturing sector’s localisation and transformation objectives

Sars customs modernisation depends on new skills and industry support to shape smart ecosystem

By: Schalk Burger     16th September 2021 The customs modernisation programme of the South African Revenue Service (Sars), announced on September 1, requires the upskilling of customs officials, as well as the support of and collaboration with industries, businesses and the whole of government to shape a customs and trade ecosystem that... 

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... 

IPO mania skips Africa, where fast-growing firms prefer debt

By: Bloomberg     16th September 2021 A global surge in initial public offerings has so far eluded sub-Saharan Africa. Companies have raised a record $467-billion on the world’s stock exchanges during the first eight months of this year, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Yet in Johannesburg, home of Africa’s largest bourse, 21... 

SAA will need upgraded fleet to compete outside Africa, CEO says

By: Bloomberg     16th September 2021 South African Airways will need a more modern fleet to be competitive on routes outside its home continent following the Covid-19 crisis, according to interim CEO Thomas Kgokolo. The State-owned airline, poised to resume flights after emerging from bankruptcy proceedings, used to generate revenue... 

A photo of SAA's logo

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... 

UIF urges finalisation of outstanding Covid-19 Ters applications before December deadline

By: Donna Slater     15th September 2021 The Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF) appeals to employers to resolve any errors on their submitted Covid-19 Temporary Employer/Employee Relief Scheme (Ters) portal to enable the fund to finalise any outstanding claims. The UIF notes that claims cannot be finalised until certain corrections are... 

Opinion: Steel Master Plan needs refining if it is to help revive downstream industry

15th September 2021 In this opinion article, Duferco MD Ludovico Sanges argues that the Steel Master Plan is a good start, but that certain key issues still need to be addressed if the embattled downstream steel industry is to be revived. 

Photo of Duferco MD Ludovico Sanges
Duferco MD Ludovico Sanges

WHO-backed vaccine hub for Africa to copy Moderna Covid-19 shot

By: Reuters     14th September 2021 Efforts to develop an African base for Covid-19 vaccine production will focus on trying to replicate Moderna's shot, but a lack of progress in talks with the U.S. company mean the project will take time, a senior WHO official told Reuters. The drive to produce vaccines in Africa is designed to... 

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

SA ranks eighty-fourth among 165 jurisdictions in Economic Freedom report

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     14th September 2021 South Africa ranked eighty-fourth out of 165 countries and territories included in the ‘Economic Freedom of the World: 2021 Annual Report’ released by think tank the Free Market Foundation in conjunction with Canada’s Fraser Institute. In 2000, South Africa ranked fifty-eighth on the list of... 

Cabinet Ministers meet to discuss economic recovery 

By: Bloomberg     14th September 2021 South Africa’s government met Tuesday to discuss how to accelerate the country’s economic recovery and consider the most feasible way to provide further welfare grants. The ruling African National Congress (ANC) has agreed in principle on the need for a basic income grant and the government is... 

South African Minister in the Presidency Mondli Gungubele
Photo by Creamer Media
Minister in the Presidency Mondli Gungubele

Eastern Cape govt embarks on tourism economic recovery activities

By: Yvonne Silaule     14th September 2021 The six-day hiking trail from Coffee Bay to Port St Johns, in the Eastern Cape, that is under construction forms part of the economic recovery efforts of the province’s tourism sector. MEC of Finance, Economic Development, Environmental Affairs and Tourism Mlungisi Mvoko made the announcement... 

Eskom evacuates staff who hid in locked Ga-Rankuwa offices to escape angry residents

By: News24Wire      14th September 2021 Power utility Eskom safely evacuated its employees that it claimed were being held against their will by angry residents of Morula View in Mabopane, north of Pretoria, over the lack of power supply in the area. According to Eskom, the hostage situation followed the community's demand for the... 

Govt launches portal for businesses affected by unrest

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     14th September 2021 The South African government has launched an online Business Loss Portal for the registration of businesses that were affected by the unrest which took place during July 9 to 19 in KwaZulu-Natal, Gauteng and other affected areas in the country. As part of the relief package announced by President... 

South Africa’s green energy push hinges on R402bn debt fix

By: Bloomberg     14th September 2021 The head of South Africa’s State power utility needs to substantially reduce its R402-billion of debt to realise his vision of transforming the coal-addicted behemoth into a leading green-energy producer and create as many as 300 000 jobs in the process. Eskom Holdings supplies more than 90% of... 

BMW, JPMorgan urge UK to ease Covid limits on Southern Africa

By: Bloomberg     13th September 2021 Dozens of companies appealed to UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson to ease restrictions on travel from southern Africa that are hampering trade. The limits on movement are jeopardising the competitive advantage the UK has, which stem from its historical, cultural and economic links with Africa, the... 

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

ICA urges Sasria to start paying out partial claims to assist riot-affected businesses

By: Simone Liedtke     13th September 2021 Public loss adjuster Insurance Claims Africa (ICA) is urging the South African Special Risk Insurance Association (Sasria) to urgently pay riot-related claimants 30% of their insured sum upfront, in order to assist cash-strapped businesses get back on their feet as quickly as possible and prevent... 

Time to rebuild, reinvest in South Africa – BLSA CEO

By: Simone Liedtke     13th September 2021 Business Leadership South Africa (BLSA) CEO Busi Mavuso has commended President Cyril Ramaphosa’s decision to move South Africa back to adjusted lockdown Level 2, which she says is “ultimately the route back to a fully functioning economy and freedom to get back to a normal life”. While the move... 

Move to Level 2 lockdown bodes well for economy – Parsons

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     13th September 2021 The announcement by President Cyril Ramaphosa that the country moves to an adjusted Level 2 lockdown is positive news for the economy, North-West University Business School economist Professor Raymond Parsons says. He says that, although the recent better-than expected second-quarter gross... 

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

Satsa advocates for UK to move South Africa to its ‘amber’ list

By: Marleny Arnoldi     13th September 2021 The Southern Africa Tourism Services Association (Satsa) has called on the UK government to move South Africa to its amber list in the next traffic light review, which is likely to take place later this week. The UK imposed a traffic light system to determine the correct Covid-19 precautions... 

Satsa CEO David Frost
Satsa CEO David Frost

President loosens Covid-19 curbs, shortens curfew

By: Reuters     12th September 2021 South Africa will ease Covid-19 restrictions, including by shortening a nationwide curfew and extending the hours of alcohol sales, President Cyril Ramaphosa said in a televised address on Sunday. Ramaphosa announced the country would move down one level in a five-tier system of restrictions,... 

A photo of President Cyril Ramaphosa
President Cyril Ramaphosa

Competition Commission advances efforts to mitigate price gouging during pandemic  

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     10th September 2021 The Covid-19 pandemic has led to a spike in price gouging and complaints from customers, and the Competition Commission of South Africa had to, and continues to, focus efforts on mitigating this situation, and has learnt several lessons from this. This was indicated during the a webinar hosted by... 

An image of Competition Commission Litigation manager
Competition Commission Litigation manager Candice Slump outlines the CC‘s legal and practical approach to price gouging during the pandemic.

Asata welcomes digital Covid-19 vaccination certificate initiative

By: Marleny Arnoldi     10th September 2021 The Association Of Southern African Travel Agents (Asata) is optimistic about the announcement by Health Minister Dr Joe Phaahla that South Africa will roll out digital vaccine certificates for vaccinated South Africans. The Minister announced that vaccinated South Africans will be able to... 

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