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Macro and Micro News

Barloworld brings industry veteran Gwagwa on board as chairperson

By: Marleny Arnoldi     14th July 2021 Industrial services company Barloworld has appointed Dr Nolulamo Gwagwa chairperson of the board, effective October 1. This is in addition to her appointment as independent nonexecutive director. 

RFA foresees shortages of retail goods soon

By: Marleny Arnoldi     14th July 2021 Mass looting in KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng, as well as the wanton destruction of trucks and goods, has damaged the wholesale and retail sectors and their distribution centres in these provinces. The Road Freight Association (RFA) in a statement on July 14 pointed out that 80% of South African... 

RFA CE Gavin Kelly
RFA CE Gavin Kelly

Consortium unveils plans for zero-emission Eastern Cape e-methanol plant 

By: Terence Creamer     14th July 2021 An agreement for the development of a greenfield facility in Humansdorp, in the Eastern Cape, to manufacture zero-carbon e-methanol for sale locally and for export has been concluded by a consortium comprising Earth and Wire, ENERTRAG South Africa and 24Solutions. The proposed facility will... 

Image of an ENERTRAG green hydrogen facility in Germany
An ENERTRAG green hydrogen facility in Germany

Ports, key rail line disrupted by violence - Transnet

By: Reuters     14th July 2021 Durban port has suffered major disruption after days of unrest, and operations have also been badly affected at the Richards Bay port and on a national freight rail line, logistics and freight companies said on Wednesday. The violence erupted last week in KwaZulu-Natal province, where Durban is... 

Zikalala warns of increased unemployment as protests continue, factories destroyed  

By: Yvonne Silaule     14th July 2021 KwaZulu-Natal Premier Sihle Zikalala has warned that the ongoing protests and looting in KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng will dampen investor confidence and derail economic recovery efforts. “The social costs of the damage might come in the form of increased unemployment and poverty in years to come,”... 

KwaZulu-Natal Premier Sihle Zikalala
KwaZulu-Natal Premier Sihle Zikalala

eThekwini Mayor cites potential R20bn GDP loss, calls for unrest to stop  

By: Sashnee Moodley     14th July 2021 eThekwini Mayor Mxolisi Kaunda revealed on Wednesday that the loss of gross domestic product in the region could be over R20-billion if the protests taking place across KwaZulu-Natal do not end immediately. Protests against the imprisonment of former President Jacob Zuma turned violent over the... 

eThekwini Mayor Mxolisi Kaunda
eThekwini Mayor Mxolisi Kaunda

Crowds rampage overnight, defying calls for end to violence, looting

By: Reuters     14th July 2021 Crowds looted shops and businesses in South Africa on Wednesday, defying government calls for an end to a week of violence that has killed more than 70 people, wrecked hundreds of businesses and shut down a refinery. Protests that followed the jailing of ex-president Jacob Zuma last week for... 

South Africa unrest hits farming, threatens food supply

By: Reuters     13th July 2021 South African farmers have been hit by days of unrest and looting as trucks carrying produce are prevented from delivering to markets, threatening food supplies, industry officials said. Crowds have this week clashed with police and ransacked shopping malls, with dozens reported killed as... 

Worst violence in years spreads in South Africa as grievances boil over

By: Reuters     13th July 2021 Crowds clashed with police and ransacked or burned shopping malls in South Africa on Tuesday, with dozens reported killed as grievances unleashed by the jailing of former president Jacob Zuma boiled over into the worst violence in years. Protests that followed Zuma's arrest last week have widened... 

Ramaphosa to address nation as violence, looting persist   

By: Thabi Madiba     12th July 2021 President Cyril Ramaphosa will address the nation, on Monday, on government’s response to the unrest in parts of the country. This after protests against the imprisonment of former President Jacob Zuma turned violent over the weekend, with looting and violence making headlines in KwaZulu-Natal... 

Image of South Africa's President Cyril Ramaphosa
President Cyril Ramaphosa

Cape storm could cause lengthy power outages, warns Eskom

By: News24Wire      12th July 2021 Severe winter weather in the Western Cape poses a threat to Eskom's network, the power utility warned on Monday. In a statement, Eskom said strong winds, extreme cold and heavy rainfall could affect electricity supply, potentially leaving some customers with prolonged periods without power. 

Spreading violence after Zuma jailing hits South Africa's rand

By: Reuters     12th July 2021 South Africa's rand tumbled more than 2% on Monday, battered by an outbreak of violence and looting after the jailing of former president Jacob Zuma. South Africa's Defence Force said on Monday it would deploy soldiers in the Gauteng and KwaZulu-Natal provinces to assist law enforcement agencies.... 

Despite tailwinds, South Africa’s recovery could fade into ‘another lost decade’ without reforms 

By: Terence Creamer     12th July 2021 The World Bank expects South Africa to grow by 4% in 2021, supported by the strong global economic recovery from Covid and favourable commodity prices. However, the bank also warns that the medium-term outlook remains uncertain and will depend largely on whether the country is able to implement... 

Image of large mining vehicles at an iron-ore mine
Commodity prices supporting South Africa rebound

SANDF deploys soldiers in Gauteng and KwaZulu-Natal

By: Thabi Madiba     12th July 2021 The South African National Defence Force said on Monday it would deploy soldiers to support the South African Police Service in Gauteng and KwaZulu-Natal. Protests against the incarceration of former President Jacob Zuma turned to violent looting. The SANDF has stressed that its objective is to... 

SANDF deploys soldiers in Gauteng and KwaZulu-Natal

Govt, business engagement can save lost jobs, pleads BLSA

By: Marleny Arnoldi     12th July 2021 Some occurrences in recent weeks have boosted business confidence in South Africa but policy direction remains unnecessarily hostile to business, especially the alcohol industry, says Business Leadership South Africa (BLSA) CEO Busi Mavuso. She lists the occurrences as improvements in... 

Saving lives, preventing more business closures a priority – Ramaphosa 

By: Thabi Madiba     12th July 2021 President Cyril Ramaphosa said on Monday that in dealing with the Covid-19 pandemic, government has sought to balance saving lives and preserving livelihoods in an evidence-based manner; however, he acknowledged that restrictions have detrimentally impacted businesses. He stated that, for now,... 

Image of South Africa's President Cyril Ramaphosa
President Cyril Ramaphosa

Level 4 restrictions bring some relief for restaurants, gyms and cash-strapped workers

By: News24Wire      12th July 2021 Restaurants can now open for sit-down meals, the government's employees' relief scheme is set to be extended, but alcohol remains banned. During a televised national address on Sunday, President Cyril Ramaphosa announced these adjusted Level 4 regulations as South Africa battles a third... 

South African President Cyril Ramaphosa
President Cyril Ramaphosa

Johannesburg’s mayor Makhubo dies after contracting coronavirus

By: Bloomberg     9th July 2021 The mayor of Johannesburg, South Africa’s economic hub and largest city, has died after contracting the coronavirus. Geoff Makhubo took office in December 2019 after the ruling party wrested control of the city from an opposition coalition. He was hospitalized after becoming infected with... 

Mantashe 'grapples' with difference between a permit and licence as 100-MW reform drafting nears completion  

By: Terence Creamer     7th July 2021 Mineral Resource and Energy Minister Gwede Mantashe says that a revised amendment to Schedule 2 of the Electricity Regulation Act, reflecting an increase in the licence-exemption cap from 1 MW to 100 MW, will be finalised within the coming week and will be shared with The Presidency “so that we... 

Photograph of Mineral Resource and Energy Minister Gwede Mantashe
Mineral Resource and Energy Minister Gwede Mantashe

Gauteng Treasury loses R6m after bungled Microsoft payment 

By: News24Wire      7th July 2021 The Gauteng Department of Treasury has lost more than R6-million after it mistakenly paid for services in dollars instead of rand. The department erroneously paid $20-million instead of R20-million as per e-Government payment advice for the cost of Microsoft fees, Democratic Alliance spokesperson... 

Image of South African currency

Congo names ex-IMF official as first woman central bank head

By: Bloomberg     7th July 2021 Democratic Republic of Congo named Malangu Kabedi-Mbuyi as its first female central bank governor, according to the office of President Felix Tshisekedi. Kabedi-Mbuyi replaces Deogratias Mutombo, who was in the position for eight years. 

EOH reiterates commitment to transparency amid possible blacklisting

By: Simone Liedtke     6th July 2021 The State Information Technology Agency (SITA) is due to make its recommendations to the National Treasury soon about whether information technology services company EOH should be blacklisted from participating in State tenders. In response, EOH on July 6 reiterated its stance that it has treated... 

Govt still remiss in its consultation with private sector on Covid-19 lockdowns, says BLSA

By: Donna Slater     5th July 2021 Despite the improvements in government’s approach to tackling the Covid-19 pandemic and associated lockdown regulations, Business Leadership South Africa CEO Busi Mavuso says government has still not embraced consultation with the private sector. She points out this has been a case in point with... 

South African factory activity expands at slower rate in June - PMI

By: Reuters     5th July 2021 South African private sector activity expanded at a slower rate in June as output fell for the first time this year and growth in new orders stalled, a survey showed on Monday. IHS Markit's Purchasing Managers' Index (PMI) fell to 51.0 in June from 53.2 in May, staying above the 50 level that... 

Business community mourns the tragic passing of Rob Legh

By: Creamer Media Reporter      2nd July 2021 Business Unity South Africa (Busa) says it notes with shock and sadness the passing of Rob Legh on Thursday, July 1. "We express our sincere and heartfelt condolences to Rob’s family, his wife Kathryn and children India and Tommy, as well as his colleagues. 

KfW issues RFI for €200m South African green-hydrogen programme 

By: Terence Creamer     2nd July 2021 A request for Information (RFI), aimed at gathering information on potential green hydrogen project opportunities in South Africa, has been released. The RFI has been issued by the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) and Meridian Economics on behalf of German development bank... 

KfW issues RFI for €200m South African green-hydrogen programme

Climate Commission sees no downside to more ambitious emissions pledge 

By: Terence Creamer     2nd July 2021 South Africa’s Presidential Climate Commission (PCC) has recommended that government make an improved carbon-reduction commitment to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change in its updated Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC) and should also confirm a long-term target of... 

President Cyril Ramaphosa
President Cyril Ramaphosa

PwC warns manufacturing, mining ICS systems facing cyber-threats

By: Schalk Burger     1st July 2021 Advisory multinational PwC has highlighted emerging cyber-threats affecting the mining and manufacturing sectors, particularly among South African and other Africa-based organisations. The technologies most targeted by attackers within these sectors are industrial control systems (ICS), which are... 

Decision on Sinovac vaccine to be announced soon – SAHPRA 

By: Thabi Madiba     1st July 2021 The South African Health Products Regulatory Authority CEO Dr Boitumelo Semete-Makokotlela announced that a decision on the Sinovac vaccine will be communicated in the coming days. Last month, SAHPRA revealed that applications had been received for the Sputnik V and Sinovac’s Coronavac vaccines... 

SAHPRA CEO Dr Boitumelo Semete-Makokotlela
SAHPRA CEO Dr Boitumelo Semete-Makokotlela

Higher education dept establishes programme to strengthen student health amid third wave

By: Yvonne Silaule     1st July 2021 The Department of Higher Education and Training has, through its Higher Health agency, established a district campus health and wellness mobile clinic healthcare programme to strengthen student health and wellness services at campuses in underprivileged communities. Minister of Higher Education,... 

Importance of SARB’s independence underlined during centenary celebration 

By: Terence Creamer     30th June 2021 The importance of the South African Reserve Bank’s (SARB’s) independence was underlined repeatedly during a virtual celebration held on Wednesday to mark the institution’s centenary. In her address, International Monetary Fund MD Kristalina Georgieva described the SARB as a “role-model of... 

To mark its centenary, the SARB will issue a commemorative circulation R5 coin
To mark its centenary, the SARB will issue a commemorative circulation R5 coin

South Africa needs to improve the inclusiveness of the economy

By: Schalk Burger     30th June 2021 Policy research and development think tank the Centre for Development and Enterprise (CDE) notes in a new report that there is limited empirical information on which to base policies to support the growth of small, medium-sized and microenterprises (SMMEs) and grow the inclusiveness of the... 

Mercedes-Benz South Africa starts production of new C-Class 

30th June 2021 Mercedes-Benz South Africa in June started production of the new C-Class, the W206, at its East London plant, in the Eastern Cape. Tasneem Bulbulia attended the launch. 

Mercedes-Benz South Africa starts production of new C-Class
Mercedes-Benz South Africa starts production of new C-Class

Digital skills hub to provide free access to MS Office 365 for South Africa's youth

By: Schalk Burger     29th June 2021 Information technology (IT) multinational Microsoft South Africa and digital skills organisation SAtion have formed a partnership to enhance the employability of youth through online platform the SAtion Digital Skills Hub. The hub will provide free access to Microsoft Office 365 suite technology,... 

Support income for sectors closed by govt under discussion – Thulas Nxesi 

By: Thabi Madiba     29th June 2021 Employment and Labour Minister Thulas Nxesi announced on Tuesday that the department’s social partners will be engaging at the National Economic Development and Labour Council this week to thrash out a plan for income support for sectors closed by the government – in particular the alcohol... 

Employment and Labour Minister Thulas Nxesi
Photo by Creamer Media
Employment and Labour Minister Thulas Nxesi

EOH confirms it is seeking damages from former CEO, CFO and other execs

By: Schalk Burger     29th June 2021 Information technology services company EOH on June 29 confirmed that it has filed civil claims and is suing several former EOH executives including former CEO Asher Bohbot, former CFO John King, former public sector head Jehan Mackay and former EOH International head Ebrahim Laher for about... 

Former EOH CEO Asher Bohbot
Photo by Creamer Media
Former EOH CEO Asher Bohbot

South Africa FDI inflows narrow to R6.1bn in first quarter

By: Reuters     29th June 2021  South Africa's foreign direct investment (FDI) inflows narrowed to R6.1-billion in the first quarter of this year from R16-billion in the fourth quarter of 2020, the central bank said on Tuesday. "The increase in non-resident parent entities equity investment in domestic subsidiaries more than... 

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