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Macro and Micro News

South African businesses facing many risks

By: Schalk Burger     26th October 2021 A survey of 2 869 business executives in Group of Twenty (G20) countries, including 110 in South Africa, showed that 38% of South African companies are under pressure in the next 12 months to integrate technology, compared with 41% globally. Twenty-nine per cent of South African respondents said... 

Business body Busa seeks court order on mandatory Covid-19 vaccination

By: News24Wire      26th October 2021 Court action initiated by Business Unity South Africa (Busa) to seek an order on compulsory Covid-19 vaccination in the workplace is looming. The business lobby says it is consulting lawyers over the legal process of the action, which is supported by its members as part of the measures aimed at... 

Covid-19 vaccine

Godongwana's request for a one-week delay for medium-term budget approved  

By: News24Wire      26th October 2021 Parliament spokesperson Moloto Mothapo took to Twitter on Tuesday to announce that Finance Minister Enoch Godongwana's medium-term budget policy statement will be pushed back by a week to 11 November. This comes after Business Day reported that the date for Godongwana's joint sitting debut would... 

Finance Minister Enoch Godongwana
Finance Minister Enoch Godongwana

Countdown to COP26  

22nd October 2021 Creamer Media's Chanel de Bruyn speaks to Engineering News Editor Terence Creamer about the final countdown to COP26, the South African government's negotiating stance and its plans to canvass a just energy transition financing facility. 

Photo Terence Creamer
Countdown to COP26

Private power generation creates multiple benefits

By: Theresa Bhowan-Rajah     22nd October 2021 The South African economy will benefit from the recent change in regulation that enables private organisations to invest in larger power-generation infrastructure, says natural gas producer Renergen. “The economy will benefit through the upfront monetary expenditure by private companies on power... 

Renergen CEO Stefano Marani standing
STEFANO MARANI Solar’s peak power generation is when the grid needs only moderate power

Seifsa confirms end of three-week metals and engineering strike

By: Creamer Media Reporter      21st October 2021 The Steel and Engineering Industries Federation of Southern Africa (Seifsa) has confirmed the end of the strike that has affected the metal and engineering sector in the past three weeks. Seifsa, on behalf of its affiliated associations, and labour reached a "landmark" agreement on the issue of... 

A photo of Numsa members striking

Above-trend growth of 5.1% expected for global economy in 2021 – Fitch Solutions

By: Simone Liedtke     21st October 2021 Above-trend growth of 5.1% was expected for the global economy this year, independent solutions and insights firm Fitch Solutions Country Risk and Industry Research revealed during a webinar on October 21. Growth was likely to slow to 4.2% in 2022, it added. 

South Africa’s integrated energy policy ‘vacuum’ discouraging investment, report warns 

By: Terence Creamer     21st October 2021 The continued absence of a long-term vision for South Africa’s energy sector is creating a policy “vacuum” and undermining investment, the 2021 edition of the South African Energy Risk Report states. Published by the South African National Energy Association (Sanea), the report highlights that... 

Photo of power lines

Numsa loses ConCourt bid to force Parliament to halt liquidation of SA Express, Denel

By: News24Wire      20th October 2021 In a blow for the National Metalworkers Union of South Africa (Numsa), the Constitutional Court ruled on Wednesday that it cannot hear the union's application seeking to have Parliament decide whether State-owned enterprises can be allowed to go insolvent.  According to the apex court, the matter... 

South African Airways logo

Consumer price inflation ticks up to 5%

By: News24Wire      20th October 2021 September inflation rose marginally to 5% from 4.9% recorded in August, data from Stats SA shows. The slight uptick was in line with the expectations of economists and still easily within the target range of between 3% and 6% set by the SA Reserve Bank. The consumer price index increased by 0.2%... 

Consumers

Community artisanal mining project well-received in Lower Orange River region 

20th October 2021 Situated in a remote desert wilderness along the banks of the South African side of the Lower Orange River, which forms part of the border between South Africa and Namibia, LOR Diamonds has found a solution to illegal mining in the area. Simone Liedtke, who visited the mineral assets last month,... 

Real economy report image
Community artisanal mining project well-received in Lower Orange River region

Family who exited De Beers for $5bn seeks out Asia’s rich

By: Bloomberg     20th October 2021 The family office for Nicky Oppenheimer and his son Jonathan has set up an outpost in Singapore to boost its Asia exposure and partner with the region’s wealthy. Edoardo Collevecchio, the former chief of staff for Oppenheimer Generations, is moving from London to build and lead its team in... 

Energy transition holds greatest promise for growth, job creation and development 

By: Schalk Burger     19th October 2021 A transition away from fossil fuel-based electricity to renewable-based electricity in South Africa can contribute significantly to job creation, growth and increased availability of electricity to support other commercial activities, four investment and energy specialists noted during a... 

South Africa’s electricity woes continue to place manufacturing at risk 

By: Terence Creamer     19th October 2021 The lack of reliable electricity supply is not only leading to lost production and increased costs across South Africa’s shrinking manufacturing sector, but has left enterprises unable to plan, invest and grow, Manufacturing Circle executive director Philippa Rodseth warned on Tuesday. Speaking... 

Photo of power lines

Trade activity recovering at moderate pace but remains below neutral level

By: Schalk Burger     18th October 2021 The South African Chamber of Commerce and Industry (Sacci) says the momentum in trade conditions that was temporarily interrupted in July appears to be recovering, although at a moderate pace, and the Trade Activity Index (TAI) remained in negative territory at 39 points for September. After... 

'Catastrophic' fuel price hike on the cards, AA warns

By: News24Wire      18th October 2021 A "catastrophic" fuel price hike is on the cards for November, the Automobile Association (AA) has warned. Based on its calculations, R20 per litre for petrol was "realistic" before the end of the year, it said in a statement on its website on Monday. 

Petrol Pump

Where a $5bn green incentive runs into politics of coal

By: Bloomberg     18th October 2021 The world’s richest countries are courting South Africa as a model of how to transition to a more climate-friendly future from a dependency on coal. While $5-billion of cheap loans and grants are on offer as a first step, transforming Africa’s most industrialized economy demands more than cash.... 

An image of the coalyard at the Majuba power station

GE donation will provide 20 000 people with one daily meal for 12 months

By: Thabi Madiba     18th October 2021 In marking World Food Day on 16 October, The GE Foundation announced a $100 000 donation that will provide immediate relief to South African communities experiencing food insecurity. The donation will fund FoodForward SA and help to provide more than 20 000 people with one meal a day for a year... 

Image of vegetables

Employment stimulus programme to provide almost R1bn in youth funding – Ramaphosa

By: Thabi Madiba     18th October 2021 South Africa cannot afford endless delays in addressing unemployment, said President Cyril Ramaphosa on Monday as he sought to assure citizens that phase two of the Presidential Employment Stimulus (PES) will bring the country closer to meeting its collective goal of decent work and opportunity... 

Image of President Cyril Ramaphosa
President Cyril Ramaphosa

IDC's approval of R1bn post-riot business recovery funding to sustain 22 493 jobs

By: Schalk Burger     18th October 2021 The Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) says approvals for Post-Unrest Business Recovery Funding have surpassed R1-billion and will sustain 22 493 jobs. The agency said the fund was established to help affected businesses in a variety of sectors, including retail, manufacturing and... 

Govt speeding up plans to designate Sedibeng as SEZ

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     15th October 2021 Trade, Industry and Competition Deputy Minister Fikile Majola says government is working "with great speed" towards designating the whole of Sedibeng into a special economic zone (SEZ) to be named the Vaal SEZ. Majola was speaking at the Sedibeng Investment Conference, hosted in Vanderbijlpark,... 

IEA warns of energy market turbulence, underinvestment  

15th October 2021 Creamer Media's Chanel de Bruyn speaks to Engineering News Editor Terence Creamer about the release of the International Energy Agency's (IEA's) latest World Energy Report and warnings of more energy market turbulence unless higher levels of investment are made to both meet demand and decarbonise... 

Image of Terence Creamer
IEA warns of energy market turbulence, underinvestment

Tshwane Automotive SEZ setting a precedent for speedy development

By: Marleny Arnoldi     15th October 2021 Trade, Industry and Competition deputy Minister Fikile Majola this week said the Tshwane Automotive Special Economic Zone (TASEZ) represents a turning point in how special economic zones (SEZs) must be owned and operated, adding that Gauteng’s economic development was being led by these... 

Tshwane Automotive Special Economic Zone construction in progress
Photo by Creamer Media's Marleny Arnoldi
Tshwane Automotive Special Economic Zone construction in progress

Initiative aims to double industry supply in five years 

By: Halima Frost     15th October 2021 The ‘Doubling of Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) Market’ initiative, driven by the Department of Mineral Resources and Energy (DMRE) and the Liquefied Petroleum Gas Association of South Africa (LPGSA), initiated in December 2019, is slowly gaining momentum after the inevitable impact of Covid-19 on... 

A stainless steel stove top with gas burners burning blue flame from an LPG gas supply, used for cooking
LPGSA MD Gadibolae Dihlabi discusses the plan to double the LPG sector over the next five years

CoJ signs agreement to possibly take over Soweto, Sandton supply from Eskom

By: Schalk Burger     14th October 2021 The City of Johannesburg (CoJ) has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with State-owned power utility Eskom with a view for City Power to potentially take over electricity supply for 14 areas in Soweto and Sandton. The affected areas include parts of Soweto, Sandton, Orange Farm, Ivory... 

R11bn Phase 2 of employment stimulus programme to focus on pathways to sustainable employment 

By: Schalk Burger     14th October 2021 The second phase of the Presidential Employment Stimulus Programme (PESP) will include the establishment of a new Social Employment Fund, which aims to support 50 000 work opportunities for common good in communities provided by organisations outside of the State. It will also include the... 

Joffe to step down as CEO, take over as chairperson of Long4Life

By: Creamer Media Reporter      14th October 2021 JSE-listed Long4Life, which has reported a pleasing operating and financial performance for the six months ended August 31, has announced that Brian Joffe will relinquish his position as CEO at the end of the 2022 financial year, at which time he will take over as chairperson. Current chairperson... 

Numsa rejects new wage offer, engineering strike continues

By: Reuters     14th October 2021 South Africa's biggest engineering union, Numsa, has rejected a new wage offer as a national strike that has already hit output at car maker BMW enters its second week on Thursday, employer body Seifsa said. The National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa), with around 155,000 members... 

A photo of striking Numsa members

Hybrid model ideal for future world of work  

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     13th October 2021 The majority of South Africans prefer working from home, even it is only some of time, and a hybrid work model presents an ideal option for the future of work, speakers participating in the second yearly Future of Work conference said. The virtual event, held on October 13, was hosted by CNBC... 

South Africa needs to ramp up critical minerals exploration as world decarbonises - study 

By: Terence Creamer     13th October 2021 The South African mining sector can remain internationally competitive and support socioeconomic development only if it drives decarbonisation and adapts to the global shift in commodity demand towards minerals used in green sectors such as renewable electricity and electric vehicles (EVs), a new... 

A photo of an iron-ore stockpile

Billionaire-backed South African stock exchange expects 2023 breakeven

By: Bloomberg     13th October 2021 Four-year-old South African stock exchange A2X, backed by billionaire Patrice Motsepe’s African Rainbow Capital Investments, expects to break even by 2023 as trading in the secondary listings it offers takes off. The value of stocks and funds on the Johannesburg-based platform more than doubled... 

De Ruyter: Eskom working to avoid load-shedding during elections  

By: News24Wire      13th October 2021 Eskom is working to avoid load-shedding for the election season, says the power utility's CEO André de Ruyter. he power utility last week Thursday introduced stage 2 load-shedding. He affirmed that Eskom was working on repairs. "Our current planning is that we will lift load-shedding by tomorrow... 

Eskom CEO André de Ruyter
Photo by Donna Slater
Eskom CEO André de Ruyter

IEA warns of more energy market volatility as transition investment lags 

By: Terence Creamer     13th October 2021 There is a looming risk of more turbulence ahead for energy markets, the International Energy Agency (IEA) warns in its latest World Energy Outlook publication. “The world is not investing enough to meet its future energy needs, and uncertainties over policies and demand trajectories create a... 

IEA executive director Dr Fatih Birol
IEA executive director Dr Fatih Birol

South Africa has potential to unlock decarbonised chemicals sector, new study shows 

By: Terence Creamer     12th October 2021 If South Africa can unlock disruptive technology, in particular green hydrogen, it could decarbonise its petrochemicals and chemicals sectors and become a leading global producer of green fuels and chemicals for both domestic use and export. The outlook for South Africa’s crude refineries,... 

Sasol is studying the production of sustainable aviation fuels using green hydrogen at Secunda (pictured) instead of hydrogen from coal
Sasol is studying the production of sustainable aviation fuels using green hydrogen at Secunda (pictured) instead of hydrogen from coal

Manufacturing sector struggling to recover to pre-pandemic output levels

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     12th October 2021 Manufacturing production increased by 1.8% year-on-year in August, Statistics South Africa (Stats SA) reports. The largest positive contributions were made by food and beverages (9.7% and contributing 2.3 percentage points); motor vehicles, parts and accessories and other transport equipment... 

Steel strike could lead to job cuts 

By: Bloomberg     12th October 2021 South Africa’s ongoing steelworker strike is likely to lead to job cuts, further hammering an industry that’s been in decline for several years, according to the country’s main employer body. The week-long walkout by as many as 300,000 members and allies of the National Union of Metalworkers of... 

A photo of Numsa members on strike

DBSA, Pimco conclude R3bn issuance under UNECA green energy programme 

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     12th October 2021 As part of its Sustainable Development Goal Seven (SDG7) Programme, the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA) announces that the Development Bank of Southern Africa (DBSA) and Pimco have reached terms on their issuance of R3-billion of debt securities, which signals the first... 

An image of solar PV panels and wind turbines
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