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Latest News

Road body still mulling E Cape toll extension

By: Deborah Spicer     22nd March 2002 With significant equipment-upgrading expenditure on tolling facilities out of the way, the Tsitsikamma toll-road, between Salt river and Elandsbos in the Eastern Cape, will continue to operate largely unchanged until an additional 25-km section is included as part of the toll-road in about two... 

Credit insurer hit by Africa's hotspots

By: Deborah Spicer     22nd March 2002 South Africa’s largest credit insurer, Credit Guarantee, has experienced a decrease of almost R1-billion in insured turnover for Africa for the six months to December, a comparison with a similar period the previous year shows. 

SA stainless-steel mill begins a new voyage

22nd March 2002 The €232-million deal in which Spanish stainless-steel firm Acerinox acquired a 64% shareholding in South Africa's Columbus Stainless in November at last brings to the venture what many view as a critical success factor - an international alliance partner. 

Public meetings for bullet train

22nd March 2002 Members of the public who are interested in or affected by the proposed new rapid rail link project, known as Gautrain, have an opportunity to attend public meetings to be held in Midrand, Sandton, Rosebank, Kempton Park, Pretoria and Centurion during April. 

Africa's struggle to get connected

22nd March 2002 It may take all day to phone Ghana from the country next door, but if you want the latest news from a shadowy group of rebels fighting in remote West African jungles, you can always visit their website. 

Developing countries should invest in biotech R & D

22nd March 2002 Developing nations need to invest much more in biotechnology research to join a war waged by multinational companies on hunger and disease, delegates at a conference said. 

Libya is top oil-exploration destination

20th March 2002 Libya has retained its place as the world’s top oil-exploration hotspot, attracting oil companies despite slow contract negotiations and continued US sanctions, according to an industry survey. 

Biotech alone won't end world hunger

20th March 2002 Biotechnology is no panacea to end world hunger as conflict, disease, trade barriers and ignorance prevent millions from feeding themselves. 

SA makes vehicle-parts standards leap

20th March 2002 Transport Minister Dulah Omar says the decision by the South African government to adopt United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (ECE) regulations makes it possible for industry to enter into larger international markets while allowing the South African consumer to have access to a wider... 

Telecoms regulators to open way for competition

20th March 2002 South Africa’s telecoms regulator said it had issued three new draft regulations to help pave the way for the initial public offering of fixed-line monopoly Telkom and the licensing of a rival. 

Joint rich-poor country action needed to tackle poverty

20th March 2002 The efforts of developing countries to lift themselves from poverty should be complemented by action on the part of developed countries and international financial institutions, Finance Minister Trevor Manuel said in Mexico. 

Investment rating downgrade for engineering group

20th March 2002 Industrial engineering group ABB said it did not expect a big rise in its interest costs even though Moody’s Investors Service downgraded its rating. 

UN warns against opening of fishing waters

19th March 2002 The United Nations environmental programme (UNEP) warned poorer countries that the uncontrolled opening of their waters to subsidised fishing fleets from Europe and Asia could bring economic disaster. 

Strike threat in metals sector

19th March 2002 f a dispute between the National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa) and the Steel, Engineering Industry Federation of South Africa (Seifsa) is not resolved on Wednesday, 200 000 workers in the local engineering industry will embark on a legal strike. 

'Settlement in SA-US telecoms wrangle by mid-year'

19th March 2002 South African fixed-line phone utility Telkom expects a legal battle with a former contractor, Telcordia, to be settled by the middle of the year – ahead of Telkom’s planned initial public offering. 

Congo president vows to reduce poverty

19th March 2002 The Congo’s President, Denis Sassou Nguess, has vowed to implement economic reforms, reduce poverty and tackle unemployment now that he has returned to power with almost 90% of the vote. 

SA paper giant in US acquisition

19th March 2002 South Africa’s Sappi said it would buy US forest products firm Potlatch Corporation’s coated paper business for $480-million in cash in a deal which would immediately enhance earnings. 

Financial backing for Egypt-Jordan gas pipeline

19th March 2002 The Kuwait Fund for Arab Economic Development signed an agreement to lend Egypt $101-million to help finance construction of a gas pipeline from Egypt to Jordan. 

SA business could face 'corporate punishment'

18th March 2002 Two years ago medium-sized paper distribution group Papercor took paper giant Sappi to the Competition Commission for what it cited as restrictive business practices. 

E-insurance on offer in SA

18th March 2002 With the imminent introduction of the Electronic Communications and Transactions Bill, South African companies of all sizes will be extensively exposed to cyber liabilities arising from their e-activities. 

Italy offers scientific opportunities to locals

18th March 2002 South African scientists and students will now be able to train and do research at the International Centre for Generic Engineering and Biotechnology (ICEGB) in Trieste, Italy, and Delhi, India. 

Egyptian mobile firm claim role in Tunisia roll out

18th March 2002 Egypt-based regional mobile operator Orascom Telecom (OT) said it held an interest of up to 35% in the consortium that has won the second Tunisian GSM cellphone network licence. 

Deal struck in competition for French paper firm

18th March 2002 A three-month battle for control of French paper firm La Rochette ended in a backroom deal between rival bidders on Friday, when they teamed up to make a joint offer and agreed to carve up its assets. 

Subsea oil pipeline for Congo

15th March 2002 French oil major TotalFinaElf is building a subsea oil pipeline from its declining Nkossa field to the Djeno field in an effort to rationalise production in Congo Republic. 

Erwin asks competition body to probe food-price rises

15th March 2002 The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) has asked the Competition Commission to investigate the steep rise in food prices in the last few months. 

JHB Council to sell property

15th March 2002 The Johannesburg Metropolitan Council will sell the Johannesburg City Hall for R20-million to the Gauteng Legislature. City Hall is one of the 20 000 redundant properties the council wants to put to good use to generate revenue for itself. 

Algeria–Mali in gas exploration deal

15th March 2002 Algerian State-owned oil and gas company Sonatrach has signed an oil exploration agreement with Mali, its southern neighbour across the Sahara desert. 

Defence agency and bank in move to support small business

15th March 2002 South African defence procurement agency Armscor and the People’s Bank joined forces yesterday by signing a facilitation agreement which will assist black economic empowerment (BEE) within the defence-related industry. 

SA invites bids for M-Cell

15th March 2002 South Africa has invited proposals from international telecoms operators and finance houses for a stake in mobile phone operator M-Cell, currently held by a passive investor. 

Engineering group plans more dispoals

15th March 2002 The chairperson of embattled ABB said the industrial engineering group could announce asset sales within six months. 

China's steelmakers face tough year

14th March 2002 China’s steel makers face a tough year as steel prices are expected to drop further in the first half and eat into the profits of firms already suffering from the global slowdown in 2001, analysts said. 

SA – OZ vie for aluminium investment

14th March 2002 South Africa is accustomed to taking on the mighty Aussies in cricket and rugby, but it is understood that this country is now also vying against Australia for a big French aluminium investment. 

Developing countries to get assistance in trade talks

14th March 2002 Member governments of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) pledged R210-million, doubling the target set for a new global trust fund that will boost technical assistance and help developing countries to build capacity and participate fully in the Doha Development Agenda, said WTO director-general... 

Growth set to rebound in poor countries

14th March 2002 Developing countries now suffering from a global economic downturn are likely to experience a rebound in growth this year, reports the World Bank. 

R549m SA – EC deal for black empowerment

13th March 2002 The South African government and the European Commission (EC) concluded a R549-million agreement aimed at supporting job creation in the private sector through black economic empowerment (BEE). 

Algeria – Russia in gas talks

13th March 2002 Algeria and Russia’s energy ministers said in talks that the two countries, suppliers of most of Europe’s natural gas imports, should cooperate on gas issues as their key markets are liberalised. 

Low-cost housing subsidy to rise

13th March 2002 Cabinet has approved a rise in the subsidy it gives to low cost housing, effective from next month. 

Big Gabon electrification drive

13th March 2002 A hundred villages in Gabon are currently being electrified by the Siemens Power Transmission and Distribution Group (PTD) in a 20-million euro project ordered by the state energy ministry and is scheduled for completion by the end of 2003. 

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