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Economy News

Busa welcomes Operation Vulindlela progress, but calls for further advances

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     11th May 2022 Business organisation Business Unity South Africa (Busa) says in a statement that business has taken note of the report from Operation Vulindlela on the progress made in implementing some of the structural reforms required to attract investment and put the country on a path to sustained and... 

Department of Public Enterprises outlines priorities for current financial year

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     11th May 2022 The Department of Public Enterprises on May 12 outlined its Strategic Plan 2020 to 2050 and Annual Performance Plan for 2022/23, and presented this to the Portfolio Committee during a virtual briefing. The department oversees core strategic State-owned companies (SOC). 

Eskom confirms winter load-shedding risk and warns on diesel costs 

By: Terence Creamer     11th May 2022 Electricity utility Eskom has again highlighted the risk of load-shedding during the current winter period, during which it will rely heavily on the country’s expensive diesel-fuelled open-cycle gas turbines (OCGTs) to either avoid rotational cuts or reduce the intensity of such cuts.... 

Eskom transmission MD Segomoco Scheppers
Photo by Creamer Media's Donna Slater
Eskom transmission MD Segomoco Scheppers

Stage 2 load-shedding to be implemented from 17:00 to 22:00

By: Reuters     11th May 2022 State power utility Eskom said it would implement Stage 2 rotational power cuts from 17:00 to 22:00 on Wednesday due to the failure of three generation units. This would be the third day that Eskom has implemented load-shedding from 17:00 to 22:00. 

Power lines owned by Eskom

Airline sale for R51 keeps it a financial burden for South Africa

By: Bloomberg     11th May 2022 South Africa’s decision to sell a majority stake in the country’s loss-making national airline for R51 represents an ongoing financial risk to the state as the terms were skewed heavily toward the buyer, the National Treasury said. The finer print of the deal that saw the Takatso Consortium take... 

South African Airways plane

Ukraine war fuels food crisis in distant Africa

By: Reuters     11th May 2022 Zimbabwean security guard Edwin Dapi was already struggling to provide for his wife and four children before a conflict 11 000 km away in Ukraine sent global prices for grains, cooking oils, fuel and fertilizer soaring. Now his monthly pay of 18 000 Zimbabwe dollars, worth roughly $55 at the... 

Another renewables installation record forecast for 2022, but higher costs to linger

By: Terence Creamer     11th May 2022 A record 295 GW of new renewables capacity was installed globally in 2021 and the International Energy Agency (IEA) is forecasting that installations will rise to about 320 GW this year, despite elevated costs for both solar photovoltaic (PV) and wind. Solar PV is forecast to account for 60% of... 

Solar PV is forecast to account for 60% of the 2022 increase
Solar PV is forecast to account for 60% of the 2022 increase

SAA remains a financial burden for South Africa, Treasury warns  

By: Bloomberg     10th May 2022 South Africa’s decision to sell a majority stake in the country’s loss-making national airline represents an ongoing financial risk to the state as the terms were skewed heavily toward the buyer, the National Treasury said. The finer print of the deal that saw the Takatso Consortium take a 51%... 

Stats SA given R2.8bn for current financial year

By: Donna Slater     10th May 2022 Minister in the Presidency Mondli Gungubele reports that through the 2022/2023 budget vote for Statistics South Africa (Stats SA), the entity will, over the medium-term expenditure framework (MTEF), be given R2.8-billion in the 2022/23 financial year; R2.6-billion in 2023/24 and R2.8-billion in... 

New infrastructure vulnerable to climate change owing to mismanagement, corruption

By: Darren Parker     10th May 2022 New infrastructure was just as vulnerable to climate change as ageing infrastructure, said South African Local Government Association (Salga) senior climate change adviser Slindile Maphumulo on May 10. She explained that, while ageing infrastructure was vulnerable to being damaged or destroyed... 

Flood damage to roads in KZN

Groups welcome expiry of enviro authorisation for proposed coal-fired power station

By: Donna Slater     10th May 2022 The Pretoria High Court confirmed, on May 3, that the environmental authorisation for the planned 600 MW KiPower coal-fired power station had expired, meaning the proposed power station cannot be built. KiPower was intended to be built outside Emalahleni, in Mpumalanga – a region with poor air... 

Kubayi prioritises faster delivery of housing in 2022/23 budget 

By: Marleny Arnoldi     10th May 2022 Human Settlements Minister Mmamoloko Kubayi has tabled her department’s Budget Vote for the 2022/23 financial year at a time when there is rising demand for reform on housing delivery and heightened attention on the portfolio following flood disasters in KwaZulu-Natal and the Eastern Cape. The... 

Human Settlements Minister Mmamoloko Kubayi
Photo by Creamer Media
Human Settlements Minister Mmamoloko Kubayi

Stage 2 load-shedding planned for Tuesday evening – with a risk of worse during the day

By: News24Wire      10th May 2022 Stage 2 load-shedding will again be implemented from 17:00 to 22:00 on Tuesday night, Eskom announced on Tuesday morning. In addition, there is a possibility of higher load-shedding stages should any breakdowns occur during the day on Tuesday. 

A burning candle

Numsa to embark on strike at AMSA’s operations from May 11

By: Donna Slater     10th May 2022 The National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa) says it has served steelmaker ArcelorMittal South Africa (AMSA) with a 48-hour notice to strike after the union rejected AMSA’s wage increase offer. Numsa intends to start the strike at AMSA’s Vanderbijlpark, Pretoria and Newcastle... 

South Africa gearing up to negotiate ‘new paradigm’ climate finance deal  

By: Terence Creamer     9th May 2022 South Africa aims to pursue a financing solution that embraces a “different paradigm” with regard to the allocation of risk, as well as return expectations and investment horizons, when negotiating the terms and conditions of a $8.5-billion climate finance offer made in November by several... 

Presidential Climate Finance Task Team head Daniel Mminele
Presidential Climate Finance Task Team head Daniel Mminele

Kruger National Park tourist facilities to receive a makeover

By: Yvonne Silaule     9th May 2022 South African National Parks (SANParks) will invest R370-million in infrastructure upgrades and refurbishments at the Kruger National Park (KNP) over the next three years. Funds for the upgrade have been accumulated from payments from insurers and contributions from the Department of Tourism;... 

Stage 2 load-shedding kicks in on Monday evening, says Eskom  

By: News24Wire      9th May 2022 Stage 2 load-shedding will "regretfully" be implemented from 17:00 until 22:00 on Monday evening, Eskom said in a statement.  The previous bout of load-shedding was suspended just two days previously, on Saturday. Earlier, Eskom said the power system had recovered sufficiently to meet the demand... 

Electricity pylons

Eskom appoints Mathebula as acting generation exec as Dukashe resigns

By: Darren Parker     9th May 2022 State-owned utility Eskom has announced the resignation of generation group executive Phillip Dukashe, whose last day will be on May 31 after having served 26 years in the company. In his resignation letter and discussions with Eskom executives, Dukashe cited the critical need to achieve a... 

Outgoing Eskom generation group executive Phillip Dukashe
Photo by Creamer Media
Outgoing Eskom generation group executive Phillip Dukashe

Eskom warns of load-shedding at short notice on Monday evening

By: News24Wire      9th May 2022 The power system will be severely constrained on Monday evening, with the possibility of load-shedding at short notice should there be any unit breakdowns, Eskom warned on Monday. load-shedding was suspended on Saturday, and the power system has recovered sufficiently to meet the demand during... 

Ramaphosa positive about electricity reform progress despite power cuts and procurement delays  

By: Terence Creamer     9th May 2022 President Cyril Ramaphosa has attempted to put a positive gloss on the uneven progress being made under Operation Vulindlela to reform South Africa’s load-shedding-prone electricity supply industry. Writing in his weekly newsletter, he said that “a number of important, interconnected reforms are... 

President Cyril Ramaphosa
President Cyril Ramaphosa

ECSA elects its first female president

By: Darren Parker     6th May 2022 The Engineering Council of South Africa (ECSA) elected its first female president Refilwe Buthelezi following the sixth term council special meeting on May 5. ECSA has not had a female president since its inception, with ECSA stating on May 6 that the election of Buthelezi in the engineering and... 

Gordhan: Load-shedding 'might' move to Stage 1 – but Eskom sticks to status quo  

By: News24Wire      6th May 2022 Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan on Friday said that Eskom may downgrade load-shedding to Stage 1. The minister was delivering an address at the Just Transition Framework Multi-Stakeholder Conference. The two-day conference, which started on Thursday, is taking place in Gauteng and is... 

Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan
Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan

NPA, Eskom meet to collaborate on State capture and organised crime

By: Donna Slater     6th May 2022 The National Prosecuting Authority (NPA), led by National Director of Public Prosecutions Advocate Shamila Batohi and Eskom CEO André de Ruyter met on May 5 to discuss appropriate collaboration on State capture cases and other organised crimes against Eskom. Batohi and De Ruyter were accompanied... 

Nersa to hold public hearings on municipal tariff benchmarks in May

By: Darren Parker     6th May 2022 The National Energy Regulator of South Africa (Nersa) will approve its yearly percentage guideline increase and review municipal tariff benchmarks at a public hearing on May 13. This follows the publication of a consultation paper on March 30 on the review of the municipal tariff guideline... 

City of Jhb clamps down on construction of illegal structures

By: Darren Parker     6th May 2022 Over the past four months, from January to April, the City of Johannesburg’s Department of Development Planning has issued almost 300 compliance notices to property owners who have erected illegal structures without approved building plans, a statement issued by the city’s development planning... 

Saice calls for engineering industry, private sector to help humanitarian efforts in KZN

By: Schalk Burger     6th May 2022 Industry organisation the South African Institution of Civil Engineering (Saice) calls on industry bodies, the engineering fraternity and the private sector in South Africa to support efforts to relieve the humanitarian disaster in KwaZulu-Natal following widespread flooding. “We, as South... 

Opinion: Sasolburg power station turnaround offers hope for keeping lights on

6th May 2022 In this opinion article, Sasol senior VP for the Sasolburg & Ekandustria operations Rightwell Laxa, and Sebenzana MD Andrew Carr, argue that old, coal-fired power stations similar to those used by Sasol and Eskom could achieve a much-needed maintenance turnaround by blending dwindling engineering... 

Parts of the power generation fleet have been in operation for close to 70 years
Photo by Supplied: Sasol
Parts of the power generation fleet have been in operation for close to 70 years

Unions in passenger bus wage talks ink 6% wage deal

By: News24Wire      6th May 2022 The South African Road Passenger Bargaining Council (Sarpbac) has announced that unions at the passenger bus wage talks have accepted a 6% wage offer and signed a deal with employers in the sector. This comes after months of tense negotiating between employer representatives and labour at the... 

Public bus

Electricity generation procurement delays  

By: Creamer Media Reporter      6th May 2022 Creamer Media's Chanel de Bruyn speaks to Engineering News Editor Terence Creamer about the latest delays in the procurement of new electricity generation capacity under the Risk Mitigation Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme, as well as the Renewable Energy Independent Power... 

Photo Terence Creamer
Electricity generation procurement delays

Gordhan says Eskom restructuring will avert ‘protracted failure’ of utility  

By: Terence Creamer     5th May 2022 Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan acknowledged that Eskom is in crisis but has dismissed suggestions that the utility is broken and heading for a “protracted failure”, saying that the restructuring under way will result in the emergence of a “completely different entity”. Speaking at the... 

Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan
Photo by Creamer Media
Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan

Treasury launch Phase II of SA-TIED programme

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     5th May 2022 The National Treasury on May 5 launched Phase II of the Southern Africa – Towards Inclusive Economic Development (SA-TIED) programme, following what was noted as a successful first phase, with the aim of tackling challenges facing the country’s economy and guiding policy making with quality... 

An image of Finance Minister Enoch Godongwana
Enoch Godongwana

Gordhan calls for ban on sale of scrap metal to protect SA's infrastructure

By: News24Wire      5th May 2022 Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan says in order to to alleviate the risk of continued damage, theft and vandalism of freight rail infrastructure in the country, government should consider a temporary ban on the sale of scrap metal. Gordhan was replying to questions in the National... 

R745m Kusile fraud case against former Eskom managers postponed again

By: News24Wire      5th May 2022 The fraud and corruption case against former senior Eskom manager France Hlakudi and his co-accused was once again postponed in the Palm Ridge Specialised Crimes Court on Thursday. His co-accused are former Eskom group executive for the Group Capital Division, Abram Masango; businessperson... 

Tourism, travel industry has mixed feelings about new Covid regulations

By: Schalk Burger     5th May 2022 South African travel and tourism organisations have welcomed the removal of the newly gazetted Covid-19 regulations requiring a negative polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test for children under the age of 12 years, but questioned the regulations that continue to restrict the size of gatherings,... 

Floods, power cuts weighed on South African factory activity in April

By: Reuters     5th May 2022 South African private sector activity expanded at a slower rate in April as power cuts and floods in KwaZulu-Natal province weighed on output and new orders, a survey showed on Thursday. The S&P Global South Africa Purchasing Managers' Index (PMI) fell to 50.3 in April from 51.4 in March,... 

No need for ‘state of disaster’ for Eskom, we can go until Stage 8 load-shedding – Gordhan

By: News24Wire      5th May 2022 Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan has shut down the possibly of declaring a state of disaster for Eskom as the utility habitually battles unit failures at its power stations, with this recent bout leading to a week-long stretch of State 2 load-shedding.   "There should… be a distinction... 

Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan
Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan

Ramaphosa, Corobrik CEO launch new R800m Kwastina brick factory 

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     4th May 2022 President Cyril Ramaphosa and Corobrick CEO Nick Booth on May 4 officially unveiled the company’s new R800-million Kwastina brick factory, in Driefontein, Gauteng. Speaking at the unveiling, Booth described the factory as the most technologically advanced and environment-friendly brick... 

An image showing ricks outside Corobrick's new Kwastina factory
Photo by Creamer Media's Tasneem Bulbulia
Bricks outside the new Kwastina factory
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