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Economy News

Armscor to break even in 2020, Castle of Good Hope requests relief

By: Marleny Arnoldi     6th May 2020 The Armaments Corporation of South Africa (Armscor) and the Castle Control Board (CCB) on May 6 briefed the Portfolio Committee on Defence and Military Veterans on its strategic plans and budgets for the 2020/21 financial year. The parties outlined their expenditure and performance plans for... 

FNB, WesBank approves payment breaks on over 500 000 credit agreements

By: Simone Liedtke     6th May 2020 Finance services provider FNB and its subsidiary WesBank have approved payment breaks on more than 500 000 credit agreements for nearly 150 000 individual and business customers since April 1. The relief includes payment breaks and/or credit insurance assistance in excess of R4.3-billion to help... 

FNB, WesBank approves payment breaks on over 500 000 credit agreements
FNB CEO Jacques Celliers

Small business survey points to major relief only being likely at lockdown Level 2 or 1 

By: Donna Slater     6th May 2020 Findings from the Covid-19 National Small Business Survey, which was conducted after the Level 5 lockdown was eased to Level 4, point to continued stress experienced by small businesses coming out of Level 5 of the lockdown. The survey, which was released by the National Small Business Chamber... 

Current conditions ideal for exports, local production, says Jammine 

By: Irma Venter     6th May 2020 The weak rand has created a “marvelous situation for exporters”, if they can sell their product, says Econometrix director and chief economist Dr Azar Jammine. “The currency is as cheap as anything.” 

Current conditions ideal for exports, local production, says Jammine

3D printed glove remover improves hygiene in hospitals

By: Simone Liedtke     6th May 2020 Zurich-based creative agency Atoll has developed a nonprofit three-dimensional (3D) printed glove remover to assist with improving hygiene practices in hospitals. The glove remover comprises a piece of curved plastic that is placed over a waste bin and, thanks to a modular fastening system, it... 

3D printed glove remover improves hygiene in hospitals

Infrastructure at the heart of Africa’s economic growth, industrialisation

By: Simone Liedtke     6th May 2020 Overcoming the infrastructure bottleneck in South Africa will boost long-term economic growth that can drive industrialisation, Nelson Mandela University Infrastructure Development and Engagement Unit (ID&EU) associate Bongani Mankewu tells Engineering News. According to Mankewu, “there is a need... 

Infrastructure at the heart of Africa’s economic growth, industrialisation

Coronavirus lockdown pushes South African PMI to record low in April

By: Reuters     6th May 2020 South African private sector activity fell to a new record low in April, a business survey showed on Wednesday, as company closures due to a nationwide coronavirus lockdown led to a collapse in demand. Markit's Purchasing Managers' Index (PMI) tumbled to 35.1 in April from 44.5 in March, its... 

Mantashe seeks comment on draft regulations enabling municipalities to buy own power  

By: Terence Creamer     6th May 2020 Mineral Resources and Energy Minister Gwede Mantashe has released, for public comment, draft amendments to the Electricity Regulations on New Generation Capacity that would enable municipalities “in good financial standing” to develop or procure their own power generation. In a statement,... 

Mantashe seeks comment on draft regulations enabling municipalities to buy own power
Photo by Creamer Media's Donna Slater
Mineral Resources and Energy Minister Gwede Mantashe

Mboweni says he remains committed to 2019 blueprint for reform and growth

By: African News Agency      6th May 2020 South Africa's finance minister Tito Mboweni on Tuesday told members of parliament he remained committed to the structural reforms mooted in a blueprint for economic growth released by the National Treasury last year to a less-than-enthusiastic response from government's alliance partners.... 

 Mboweni says he remains committed to 2019 blueprint for reform and growth
Finance Minister Tito Mboweni

Sars raises alarm over economic capacity as it warns of R285bn under-recovery 

By: Terence Creamer     5th May 2020 South African Revenue Service (Sars) commissioner Edward Kieswetter has warned of a possible revenue under-recovery of up to R285-billion for 2020/21, while also raising the alarm over potential negative revenue impacts that could arise as a result of a loss of economic capacity due to business... 

Sars raises alarm over economic capacity as it warns of R285bn under-recovery
Photo by Creamer Media's Donna Slater
Sars Commissioner Edward Kieswetter

Report provides insight, makes recommendations for African Covid-19 response

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     5th May 2020 Lack of information, access to food and water, and money running out were some of the issues identified in an Ipsos survey on potential Covid-19 stay-at-home measures, released on May 5. The 'Responding to Covid-19 in Africa: Using Data to Find a Balance' report includes first-of-its-kind data... 

Common Covid-19 framework being developed for clothing, textile industries

By: Simone Liedtke     5th May 2020 Trade and Industry Minister Ebrahim Patel and representatives from the retail - clothing, textile, footwear and leather (R-CTFL) sector will develop a common framework for the implementation of Covid-19-ready workplaces that can serve as a guide for the industry. The agreement follows as the... 

Steel production likely to stagnate or decline this year, says Roskill 

By: Simone Liedtke     5th May 2020 Steel production in developed economies is likely to either stagnate, or decline completely, as the Covid-19 pandemic continues to influence and impact on the global economy, consultancy Roskill steel alloys principal consultant Erik Sardain said on May 5. Speaking in a webinar, he explained... 

Steel production likely to stagnate or decline this year, says Roskill
Roskill steel alloys principal consultant Erik Sardain discusses the impact of Covid-19 on the global steel industry. Video: Creamer Media's Kutlwano Matlala. Editing: Creamer Media's Nicholas Boyd.

Comair files for business rescue

By: Rebecca Campbell     5th May 2020 South African private-sector airline group Comair announced on May 5 that it was going into business rescue. This was to protect the company’s interests and those of its stakeholders. Comair operated the British Airways in South Africa and Kulula low cost carrier brands. This was a consequence of... 

Comair files for business rescue

Africa50 aids Covid-19 fight in three phases

By: Marleny Arnoldi     5th May 2020 Infrastructure investment platform Africa50 has granted $300 000 to the Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa CDC) for it to buy test kits and other medical equipment, as well as to mobilise frontline responders. Africa50 also provided $500 000 to fund other targeted... 

Mboweni calls for Covid-19 support for companies across race lines  

By: African News Agency      5th May 2020 Finance minister Tito Mboweni on Tuesday said companies affected by the Covid-19 crisis should receive support regardless of the race of their owners and hinted he was challenging minister of tourism Mmamoloko Kubayi-Ngubane on the matter. "Race is a very vexing question," Mboweni told a meeting... 

 Mboweni calls for Covid-19 support for companies across race lines
Photo by WEF
Finance Minister Tito Mboweni

BJC calls for more transparency regarding govt’s Covid economic measures

By: Thabi Madiba     5th May 2020 Voluntary civil society coalition organisation Budget Justice Coalition on Tuesday called for greater transparency regarding government’s economic measures put in place to deal with the coronavirus pandemic, saying some measures were punitive and inadequate. The BJC alleged government’s economic... 

BJC calls for more transparency regarding govt’s Covid economic measures

New index ranks physical-interaction aspect of Covid-19 transmission risk across occupations 

By: Terence Creamer     5th May 2020 A new index has been created to provide an empirical basis for ranking the physical-interaction dimension of the Covid-19 transmission risk for various occupations in South Africa – a tool that could help guide policymakers in evaluating which sectors place workers at a higher or lower risk of... 

New index ranks physical-interaction aspect of Covid-19 transmission risk across occupations

SA takes joint first place in 2019 open budget survey

By: African News Agency      5th May 2020 South Africa has once again come joint first with New Zealand in the 2019 Open Budget Index conducted by the International Budget Partnership through an Open Budget Survey. The win is in recognition of the country’s commitment to a transparent budget process. This is a repeat of the result from... 

 SA takes joint first place in 2019 open budget survey

Tribunal dismisses price fixing, tender collusion case against Bloemfontein companies

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     4th May 2020 The Competition Tribunal has dismissed a case of alleged price fixing and collusive tendering against five Bloemfontein-based companies accused of colluding on a Free State Treasury tender to supply and deliver office stationery to provincial government departments in 2014. Catha Silkscreen... 

Maitland appointed administrator for Green Outcomes Fund

By: Marleny Arnoldi     4th May 2020 The recently launched Green Outcomes Fund has appointed global corporate services firm Maitland as its corporate trustee and trust administrator. The R488-million fund was launched in April by the National Treasury’s Jobs Fund and nonprofit organisation GreenCape to help grow “green” small,... 

South Africans expect Covid-19 impact to worsen – GlobalData

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     4th May 2020 Consumer uncertainty is one of the greatest barriers facing the travel industry, and 70% of South African respondents in a recent survey by data analytics and consulting company GlobalData say they are still extremely concerned about the impact of Covid-19. In addition, 74% believe that... 

Redefine expects full-year results to show a ‘tale of two halves’ 

By: Simone Liedtke     4th May 2020 With the Covid-19 virus and related uncertainty continuing to weigh on businesses, real estate investment trust (Reit) Redefine Properties has announced a 32% fall in its distributable income per share for the six months ended February 29, to 33.46c from 49.19c in the prior comparable period.... 

Redefine expects full-year results to show a ‘tale of two halves’
Redefine Properties' management discusses their results and what can be expected in the year ahead during a webinar on May 4. Video: Creamer Media's Kutlwano Matlala. Editing: Creamer Media's Nicholas Boyd.

Ministers, President not doing whatever they want on cigarette matter, says Ramaphosa as he calls for patience, trust  

By: Thabi Madiba     4th May 2020 President Cyril Ramaphosa has addressed the controversy surrounding the cigarette ban, assuring South Africans that government was making every effort to advance the right to life and dignity. He also applauded citizens for adhering to the lockdown provision, saying the measures had proven to be... 

Ministers, President not doing whatever they want on cigarette matter, says Ramaphosa as he calls for patience, trust
President Cyril Ramaphosa

Stats SA finds people more concerned about economic impact of Covid-19

By: Marleny Arnoldi     4th May 2020 A survey conducted by Statistics South Africa (Stats SA) has found that 93.2% of respondents are very concerned or extremely concerned about the possible economic collapse of the country owing to the Covid-19 pandemic. This while 60.1% of respondents are very concerned or extremely concerned... 

Stats SA finds people more concerned about economic impact of Covid-19

BLSA urges taking economic forecasts seriously

By: Marleny Arnoldi     4th May 2020 Business organisation Business Leadership South Africa CEO Busi Mavuso in a weekly newsletter says big and small businesses alike are facing a serious calamity as a result of the Covid-19 crisis. She says she is disturbed by comments made by Trade and Industry Minister Ebrahim Patel, as quoted... 

BLSA urges taking economic forecasts seriously
Photo by Creamer Media's Donna Slater
Business Leadership South Africa CEO Busi Mavuso

African free trade deal launch unlikely this year - AfCFTA Sec Gen

By: Reuters     4th May 2020 A blockbuster African trade deal is unlikely to be implemented before early next year, an official said on Friday, after the disruption caused by the new coronavirus made the current July 1 deadline unworkable. Wamkele Mene, Secretary-General of the African Continental Free Trade Area, told... 

SAA says government exploring funding options

By: , Bloomberg     4th May 2020 South African Airways’ (SAA's) administrators extended a deadline for workers to agree to severance packages after Minister for Public Enterprises Pravin Gordhan said he needs time to explore funding options for the bankrupt state-owned carrier. The business-rescue team led by Les Matuson and... 

SAA says government exploring funding options

Covid-19 exit strategy depends on getting vaccine to whole world

By: , Bloomberg     4th May 2020 Coming up with a vaccine to halt Covid-19 in a matter of months isn’t the only colossal challenge. The next big test: getting billions of doses to every corner of the world at a time when countries increasingly are putting their own interests first. A variety of financing tools are under... 

Incentives needed to aid local energy tech

By: Mamaili Mamaila     1st May 2020 While there is an increased focus on local content across several South African industries, government could do more in terms of incentivising local manufacturing, says energy solutions company i-G3n co-founder and director Sydney Phakathi. 

Incentives needed  to aid local energy tech
NO FUSS WHATSOEVER i-G3n offers standard solutions that it can also tailor to suit the specific needs of every client

Pandemic highlights role of digital readiness in mitigating supply-chain risks

By: Schalk Burger     1st May 2020 Covid-19 is disrupting economic and social life, but it is occurring in a time of rapid digitalisation, which, in turn, is helping governments, businesses and consumers in their decision-making to respond and adapt to the situation. However, differences in digital readiness hamper the ability of... 

Pandemic highlights role of digital readiness in mitigating supply-chain risks

Energy uncertainty an opportunity for private sector

By: Theresa Bhowan     1st May 2020 Owing to power generation and energy supply uncertainty in South Africa, renewable-energy solutions provider Economic Development Solutions (EDS) believes that this creates opportunities for private-sector participation in energy supply. 

Energy uncertainty an  opportunity for private sector
Photo by Bloomberg
RENEWED AND ENERGISED There are obstacles hampering the growth of the renewable-energy sector

Supplier launches 450 new products 

By: Mamaili Mamaila     1st May 2020 Electrical switchgear supplier ElectroMechanica (EM) launched the latest edition of its product catalogue this year. A new catalogue is launched on average every two years. 

Supplier launches  450 new products
ElectroMechanica director Richard Nobbs tells Engineering News about the company’s 2020 catalogue. Camerawork: Creamer Media’s Darlene Creamer. Editing: Creamer Media’s Nicholas Boyd. Recorded: 27.02.2020

Good agricultural sales expected post lockdown

By: Darren Parker     1st May 2020 The outbreak of Covid-19 and the consequent initial 21-day national lockdown in South Africa, which has since been extended by two weeks, caused a slowdown in sales for almost every sector in South Africa, including the agricultural sector. Despite the lull, Pratley marketing director Eldon... 

Good agricultural sales expected post lockdown
DON’T BLOW A GASKET The new room temperature vulcanising silicone gasket maker compound is temperature resistant from -50 ºC to 300 ºC for short periods

Government provides detail on economic measures in response to Covid-19

By: Simone Liedtke     30th April 2020 The Covid-19 pandemic has led to a severe global economic crisis, the extent and duration of which is still uncertain. With South Africa’s economic models not being well-suited to assess a global pandemic, and with conditions changing rapidly, the South African government has lamented that the... 

Renewables to be only energy growth source in 2020 as markets experience ‘biggest shock since Second World War’

By: Terence Creamer     30th April 2020 Renewables will be the only energy source to experience growth in 2020, as Covid-19 lockdowns trigger a plunge in demand for all other energy sources amid what the International Energy Agency (IEA) is describing as the “biggest energy market shock since the Second World War”. A new IEA report,... 

Renewables to be only energy growth source in 2020 as markets experience ‘biggest shock since Second World War’
IEA executive director Fatih Birol

Zithabiseni Resort a workable quarantine site – Mpumalanga Tourism and Parks

By: Yvonne Silaule     30th April 2020 The Mpumalanga Tourism and Parks Agency (MTPA) on Thursday assured that the  Zithabiseni Resort and Conference Centre (ZRCC) is a feasible quarantine site for Covid-19 patients. MTPA spokesperson Kholofelo Nkambule revealed that there were 115 people quarantined at the site: 20 of those are... 

Zithabiseni Resort a workable quarantine site – Mpumalanga Tourism and Parks
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