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Economy News

SA will meet 500 000-jobs target – Doidge

By: Christy van der Merwe     3rd December 2009 The government is on track to meet its target of creating 500 000 job opportunities by the end of the year, Public Works Minister Geoff Doidge said on Thursday. “We will meet the 500 000 jobs target. No doubt,” he told journalists at a press briefing in Pretoria, where the presidential joint... 

SA manufacturing back in expansionary territory, PMI shows

By: Chanel de Bruyn     1st December 2009 The Kagiso Purchasing Managers Index (PMI), which is a key measure of manufacturing activity, has finally risen back above the neutral 50-index point level in November, but the rebound in South Africa’s manufacturing sector could be muted compared with historic experience, especially given the... 

New approach needed to improve SA’s labour-absorption potential 

By: Terence Creamer     27th November 2009 There is no disputing that chronically high unemployment and deteriorating income inequality are South Africa’s two most pressing challenges. There is also no disputing that government’s expanded public works programme (EPWP), while an important stop gap, is simply insufficient to deal with these... 

New centre aims to stimulate interest in science, engineering and technology 

By: Jacqueline Holman     27th November 2009 Career doors have been opened for young people with the establishment of a laboratory at the Sci-Bono Discovery Centre, in Newton, Johannesburg, to encourage their interest in science, maths, engineering and technology. 

Transnet mulling ‘equalisation’ incentive to attract shippers to Ngqura

By: Terence Creamer     27th November 2009 State-owned transport utility Transnet is considering an “equalisation” incentive for shippers using its new deep-water harbour at Ngqura, in the Eastern Cape, to make it cost competitive relative to its container facility in Durban, especially for goods being transported into the hinterland... 

Recovery won't be a fast one - Minister

By: Sapa     26th November 2009 South Africa's economic recovery will not be a fast process, Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan said in Johannesburg on Thursday. "Job creation is going to be slower than what we'd like it to be," he told a media briefing following his meeting with the Federation of Unions of SA (Fedusa) in... 

South African business confidence improves

By: Creamer Media Reporter      25th November 2009 The Rand Merchant Bank (RMB) Bureau of Economic Research (BER) business confidence index rose to 28 points during the fourth quarter of this year, its first increase since “sharp and persistent” declines saw the index drop from 85 points in the third quarter of 2006 to a low of 23 points in the... 

Big business group to work on strategies to promote ‘nonracialism'

By: Terence Creamer     24th November 2009 Business Leadership South Africa (BLSA), an organisation comprising the largest South African and multinational corporations operating in the country, has highlighted the need for continued transformation, as well as "effective strategies for the creation of a truly nonracial South Africa". CEO... 

Toolmaker training programme to be launched in January 

By: Creamer Media Reporter      23rd November 2009 The first tool, die and mould (TDM) pre-apprentice orientation programme, which formed part of measures to deal with the “drastic” skills shortage in the TDM sector – a key support sector for South Africa’s manufacturing industry – would be launched at seven pilot sites across the country in... 

French development financier to sign SA deals worth R3,5bn

By: Terence Creamer     23rd November 2009 The head of Agence Française de Développement (AFD), Jean-Michel Severino, would sign new deals worth R3,5-billion during his visit to South Africa this week, including financing arrangements with freight logistics group Transnet, as well as with the Central Energy Fund (CEF). Severino's visit... 

Varsity studies whether maths is still a good indicator of academic ability 

By: Jacqueline Holman     20th November 2009 The University of the Witwatersrand (Wits) is researching students’ underperformance at university, especially in economics. The research aims to discover whether admissions requirements have been set at the correct level and to what extent the new National Senior Certificate (NSC) matric... 

Eskom holds back on new Kusile contracts as its mulls new tariff request

By: Terence Creamer     19th November 2009 Chief officer generation at State-owned power utility Eskom, Brian Dames, confirmed on Thursday that the award of some "smaller contracts" for the group's R111-billion Kusile power plant, being built in Mpumalanga, had been delayed, which would affect the project's overall delivery schedule.... 

Recovery in SA economy lagging global economy — SARB

By: Sapa     19th November 2009 The recovery in the South African economy appears to be lagging behind that of the global economy, the South African Reserve Bank (SARB) said in its November Monetary Policy Review. Nevertheless, it added that there were convincing signs that the low point of the current growth cycle had been... 

SA’s trade activity remains in positive territory, survey shows

By: Creamer Media Reporter      18th November 2009 Despite dropping two points to 51 in October, the South African Chamber of Commerce and Industry’s (Sacci’s) Trade Activity Index (TAI) remained in positive territory, a trend that was expected to continue in the short term. Sacci on Wednesday reported that the TAI had declined from the... 

Land Bank teams up with Masisizane to grow agriculture sector 

By: Chanel de Bruyn     18th November 2009 Old Mutual’s Masisizane development finance fund and the Land Bank on Wednesday signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to collaborate their efforts to ensure growth in the agricultural sector and to create sustainable jobs, particularly in South Africa’s rural areas. Land Bank CEO Phakamani... 

Eskom makes top appointments as leadership crisis abates 

By: Terence Creamer     18th November 2009 State-owned electricity utility Eskom, which has undergone some high-profile leadership ructions in recent weeks, leading to the resignations of both CEO Jacob Maroga and chairperson Bobby Godsell, confirmed some highly anticipated senior appointments on Wednesday. In a statement, the group's... 

Gauteng increases FY2010 expenditure by R3,3bn

By: Chanel de Bruyn     17th November 2009 The Gauteng provincial government’s (GPG’s) expenditure for the 2010 financial year, has been revised upwards by R3,3-billion, to R58,5-billion, compared with the previously estimated expenditure of R55,3-billion, Finance MEC Mandla Nkomfe said on Tuesday. The adjustment to the budget included... 

Eskom mulling over new, lower tariff request 

By: Terence Creamer     16th November 2009 South Africa's African National Congress- (ANC-) led tripartite alliance, which met over the weekend, came out in opposition to Eskom's proposed electricity tariff increases of 45% a year for the three year period between April 1, 2010, and March 31, 2013. This is a material departure from the... 

Senwes loses Competition Tribunal appeal

By: Creamer Media Reporter      13th November 2009 The Competition Appeal Court has dismissed agricultural services company Senwes’ appeal against the Competition Tribunal’s February ruling that it had engaged in what was called a “margin squeeze”. It also rejected the Competition Commission’s cross-appeal against the finding made by the... 

New Eskom tariff application by the end of November 

By: Terence Creamer     13th November 2009 Power utility Eskom would submit a new and "final" tariff application to the National Energy Regulator of South Africa (Nersa) by November 30, following consultations with stakeholders, Engineering News Online has confirmed. It was unclear, however, whether this revised version would deviate... 

Hogan wants Godsell to reconsider his resignation  

By: Terence Creamer     13th November 2009 Public Enterprises Minister Barbara Hogan would approach former Eskom chairperson Bobby Godsell over this weekend to ask him to "reconsider" his resignation, she told SAfm on Friday. Godsell stepped down on Monday November 9, 2009, citing a lack of support from the shareholder, both on the Eskom... 

Threefold increase in exports affirms healthy wine industry

By: Petronel Smit     13th November 2009 Industry research body the SA Wine Industry Information and Systems (SAWIS) reports that the country’s wine exports have increased threefold in the last ten years. For the 12 months to August 2009, offshore sales volumes reached a total of 405,1-million litres, representing a 12% year-on-year... 

Passing of new bill concern 
for private companies

By: Mary-Anne O’Donnell     13th November 2009 Domestic and international courier company Aerospeed Couriers says that the logistics industry is an exciting and dynamic industry that is continuously growing and which enables all modern businesses to function, despite the challenges that it faces. 

Global economy likely to enter period of base-case growth – Caterpillar CEO

By: Irma Venter     13th November 2009 There exist two possible scenarios for the future of the global economy, says Caterpillar CEO Jim Owens. 

C&CI says it was not aware of anti-competitive behaviour

By: Creamer Media Reporter      12th November 2009 The Cement & Concrete Institute (C&CI) on Thursday emphasised that it has never been involved in, or aware of, any anti-competitive behaviour, either in its professional capacity or on behalf of any of its cement producing members. This followed on an announcement made by Pretoria Portland... 

State, not Eskom, has authority over private power, CIC asserts

By: Terence Creamer     11th November 2009 The South African government, and not Eskom, was the ultimate decision maker with respect to the Mmamabula energy project, in Botswana, CIC Energy president Greg Kinross said on Wednesday, adding that leadership situation at the South African utility would, therefore, not directly impact on the... 

Govt mulling option on Rand - Patel

By: Sapa     10th November 2009 Government will invite all stakeholders to have their say on how best to achieve a more competitive exchange rate, Economic Development Minister Ebrahim Patel said on Tuesday. "We would like an open discussion," Patel told a media briefing by Cabinet's economic and employment cluster in Cape Town.  

Use of the race card at Eskom roundly condemned 

By: Terence Creamer     10th November 2009 South Africa's powerful National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) has defended the nonracial credentials of former Eskom chairperson Bobby Godsell and has also raised concerns about seeming breaches of good governance principles at the State-owned enterprise (SoE). Speaking with Engineering News... 

Godsell calls it quits, Maroga stands firm, Makwana named acting chair 

By: Terence Creamer     9th November 2009 Eskom chairperson Bobby Godsell handed a letter of resignation to Public Enterprise Minister Barbara Hogan on Monday, following more than a week of confusion over the fate of the group's CEO, Jacob Maroga. The Department of Public Enterprises reported on Thursday afternoon that Mpho Makwana had... 

500 000 jobs target to be met Doidge insists, as figures surge 

By: Terence Creamer     9th November 2009 A total of 223 568 work opportunities were created between April and August this year as part of the expanded public works programme (EPWP), Public Works Minister Geoff Doidge reported on Monday. The second-quarter figures were released as part of a report back on the progress of government's... 

High demand for infrastructure, health services enhances Africa’s appeal for investors

By: Darren Parker     6th November 2009 Africa’s high demand for infrastructure and better health services present a myriad of business opportunities throughout the continent, German-African business development association Afrika-Verein executive vice-president Hans Meier-Ewert tells Engineering News. 

SA's exports climbed to $74bn last year, but were outpaced by imports

By: Terence Creamer     4th November 2009 South Africa's total merchandise trade grew at a nominal average yearly rate of 22% between 2003 and 2008, while the value of the country's merchandise exports more than doubled over the period to reach $74-billion by 2008, the World Trade Organisation (WTO) said in its latest trade policy review... 

Higher Education to extend Seta licensing, to review systems

By: Esmarie Iannucci     4th November 2009 The Department of Higher Education and Training on Wednesday reported that it would Gazette the one-year extension of the current sector education and training authority (Seta) licensing process, from March 2010 to March 2011, following a consultation period, while also conducting a review of the... 

World requires rebalanced growth model, top US Treasury official tells SA

By: Terence Creamer     4th November 2009 The current global growth model that relied primarily on the debt-laden American consumer was imbalanced, undesirable and unsustainable, Deputy Treasury Secretary Neal Wolin said during his visit to South Africa on Wednesday. Speaking in Johannesburg on the anniversary of the historic election... 

Job cuts at Sappi’s Mandeni factory limited to 11 – Solidarity

By: Esmarie Iannucci     2nd November 2009 Trade union Solidarity on Monday reported that 92% of the planned retrenchments at paper and pulp producer Sappi’s Mandeni factory, in Richards Bay, had been saved during a Section 189 consultation process. In its initial retrenchment notice, Sappi planned to retrench 140 of its employees at... 

Public anger over cartel abuses underpins SA’s move towards criminalisation

By: Esmarie Iannucci     30th October 2009 The Competition Amendment Bill, which was recently signed into law but was still awaiting promulgation, could change how companies regarded compliance regulation, the Competition Commission, Shan Ramburuth, told a gathering of business people on Friday. Speaking at Business Unity South Africa’s... 

US Treasury official to discuss economic recovery, regulatory reform during SA visit

By: Terence Creamer     30th October 2009 US Deputy Treasury Secretary Neal Wolin will meet with senior South African government officials during his two-day visit to South Africa next week, during which he will discuss Group of 20 (G20) efforts to support the global economic recovery and international financial regulatory reform. South... 

 

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