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Manufacturing News

Business activity in manufacturing picks up slightly in March

By: Marleny Arnoldi     Updated 1 hour 34 minutes ago The Steel and Engineering Industries Federation of Southern Africa (Seifsa) has welcomed the latest Absa Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) outcome, which reflects an increase in overall business activity in the broader manufacturing sector for March. The composite PMI data for March shows that... 

Self-sanitising coatings may help curb the spread of Covid-19 in hospitals

By: Donna Slater     Updated 6 hours ago An innovative antimicrobial coating innovation developed locally by the University of Witwatersrand (Wits) researcher and inventor Michael Lucas, could provide a supplementary sanitising solution to help control the spread of the novel coronavirus in hospitals and other medical facilities. The... 

Self-sanitising coatings may help curb the spread of Covid-19 in hospitals
Michael Lucas

Clothing, textile industry in project to produce face masks locally 

By: Irma Venter     31st March 2020 A project is underway to produce a homegrown mask for use by all South Africans, close to the standard of the FFP2 and N95 facemasks. FF2 and N95 masks are medical standard masks, often provided to hospital staff working on the frontline of infection control. They offer between 94% and 95%... 

Clothing, textile industry in project to produce face masks locally

Standard Chartered commits $1bn to companies at forefront of fighting Covid-19

By: Donna Slater     31st March 2020 International banking group Standard Chartered will commit $1-billion in financing for companies that provide goods and services to help in the fight against Covid-19, and those planning the switch into making products that are in high demand to fight the worldwide pandemic, the bank announced on... 

Factory of the Year competition postponed

By: Marleny Arnoldi     31st March 2020 The Factory of the Year competition that culminates in an awards ceremony held at the Manufacturing Indaba every year has been postponed. Event organisers nationwide have, for the last month, had to postpone or cancel events to reduce the risk of further Covid-19 infections.  

Factory of the Year competition postponed

Nampak expects Covid-19 to further hinder already burdened economies

By: Simone Liedtke     30th March 2020 As economies shift their focus towards containing the spread of and the eradication of the Covid-19 virus, packaging products manufacturer Nampak on March 30 lamented that the pandemic was expected to further hinder an already burdened economy, and that it would put further pressure on consumers’... 

No impact of Covid-19 on Illovo, other ethanol alcohol producers

By: Donna Slater     30th March 2020 While sugar and related products manufacturer Illovo Sugar South Africa (Illovo SA) reports no impact on production as a result of measures implemented to contain the spread of Covid-19, it also reaffirms its commitment to refocus the business towards meeting the growing demand for alcohol used... 

Department publishes guidelines for Debt Relief Finance Scheme, Business Growth Facility

By: Simone Liedtke     30th March 2020 The Department of Small Business Development has published, on its websites, the Guidelines for Application for the Debt Relief Finance Scheme and Business Growth/Resilience Facility. The online application form will be available from April 2; however, only small- and medium-enterprises (SMEs)... 

Solidarity Fund sets aside R100m to procure protective equipment for frontline health workers 

By: Terence Creamer     30th March 2020 The Solidarity Fund announced on March 30 that it would be using a portion of the R500-million raised during its first week of operations to facilitate the emergency procurement of the personal protective equipment – including five-million face masks – that was urgently required by public and... 

Solidarity Fund sets aside R100m to procure protective equipment for frontline health workers

Seifsa encourages re-industrialisation, development of artisans

By: Donna Slater     30th March 2020 The Steel and Engineering Industries Federation of Southern Africa (Seifsa) says that while South Africa remains a dual economy with one of the highest levels of inequality in the world, part of addressing the unemployment challenge can be tackled through re-industrialisation of its economy.... 

Nel Hydrogen’s Wallingford plant resumes operations

By: Simone Liedtke     30th March 2020 Hydrogen company Nel Hydrogen US has been defined as “essential manufacturing business” by the Connecticut state and the plant in Wallingford has, therefore, been allowed to resume operations amid the outbreak of Covid-19. However, revenues and operations will still be negatively impacted by... 

Exports can support greater local automotive development

By: Schalk Burger     27th March 2020 Local economic headwinds may potentially be offset by increasing exports under the African Continental Free Trade Area, says industry body National Association of Automobile Manufacturers of South Africa (NAAMSA) CEO Mike Mabasa. The South African automotive industry currently exports to 155... 

Exports can support greater local automotive development
Photo by Donna Slater
QUALITY WORK Ensuring that buyers gain sufficient value and quality of components and services from the value chain drive demand and local manufacturing

Export competitiveness will boost local component manufacturers

By: Schalk Burger     27th March 2020 Replacing imports with locally manufactured components and materials can sustainably improve local supplier development. This is possible if quality standards remain within global benchmarks and if manufacturers can produce sufficient volumes to ensure their costs are competitive for the... 

Export competitiveness will boost local component manufacturers
ARTHUR MTOMBENI collaboration among stakeholders in the automotive value chains and original equipment manufacturers in countries will allow for the creation of a strategic supply base

Automotive industry transformation focused on future of mobility

By: Schalk Burger     27th March 2020 Automotive industry transformation initiatives, as captured in the Automotive Masterplan 2035, are aimed at radically transforming the industry to meet the future demands of human mobility, in addition to sustaining and growing the industry’s economic outputs and associated socioeconomic... 

Automotive industry transformation focused on future of mobility
MIKE MABASA There is significant scope for cooperation on skills development, value-chain transformation and supplier development to ensure the sustainability of the automotive industry

Tyre manufacturer building retail markets to secure growth

By: Schalk Burger     27th March 2020 With export and original equipment demand in the automotive industry in Africa growing year on year, it is critical for companies to expand their reach into high-growth markets in Africa to secure long-term growth, says Sumitomo Rubber South Africa (Sumitomo Dunlop) CEO and National Association... 

Tyre manufacturer building retail markets to secure growth
NEW TYRES The performance standards, wear characteristics and manufacturing requirements of tyres used on electric vehicles are different to those used on internal combustion engine vehicles

Policy certainty to support automotive manufacturing growth

By: Schalk Burger     27th March 2020 The broad support for the Automotive Masterplan 2035 by companies across the value chain and the certainty that it creates supports local vehicle-manufacturing growth and, consequently, for the automotive components industry to increase supply, says Sumitomo Rubber South Africa (Sumitomo Dunlop)... 

Policy certainty to support automotive manufacturing growth
PRODUCTIVE CAPACITY Sumitomo Dunlop has grown its local tyre production and capacity on the certainty created by original equipment manufacturers’ plans

SA automotive manufacturing long-term planning, growth supported by policy

By: Schalk Burger     27th March 2020 The National Association of Automotive Component and Allied Manufacturers (NAACAM) has been part of the fabric of the South African automotive manufacturing landscape for over 40 years. In that time the sector has evolved from a highly protected, inward-focused production base that exclusively... 

Distributor’s experience makes for sweeter projects supply

By: Mamaili Mamaila     27th March 2020 With more than 60 years of servicing the sugar industry, power transmission products distributor Bearings International (BI) has gained meaningful expertise, which enables the company to continue being a “dependable supplier” in the industry. 

Distributor’s experience makes for sweeter projects supply
SWEET RIDE Bearings International supplies the complete drive chain – from the feeder tables where the sugar cane arrives from the farm to the pack house where the product gets distributed

Equipment design vital for sugar industry

By: Mamaili Mamaila     27th March 2020 A critical aspect of servicing the sugar industry is equipment design, says integrated engineering technology and project management company Bosch Projects sugar sector director Steve Rosettenstein. 

Equipment design vital for sugar industry
DIVERSE OFFERING For the sugar industry, Bosch Projects provides front-end cane offloading, cane preparation, juice extraction, sugar processing, sugar drying and refining equipment

Components provider extends offering for sugar industry

By: Mamaili Mamaila     27th March 2020 Engineering components provider BMG has extended its range of power transmission components to include its recently upgraded Fenagrid Premium range. 

Components provider extends offering for sugar industry
SOAKING UP BMG’s new Fenagrid Premium taper grid steel flexible couplings absorb considerable torque overloads, achieving smoother running, with consequent reduction of wear and tear on machinery

Mill equipment advances essential for industry

By: Mamaili Mamaila     27th March 2020 With the local sugar industry being more than 150 years old, advances in equipment critical to the milling process add “immense value”, as they improve the operational efficiency potential of the sugar mills, says industrial equipment supplier Verder Pumps MD Darryl Macdougall. 

Mill equipment advances essential for industry
ALLEVIATING THE DEFECTS Sucrose losses can be significantly reduced – if not mitigated altogether – if the correct advanced and integrated pumping solution is used

Company transforming amid difficulties

By: Mamaili Mamaila     27th March 2020 JSE-listed sugar producer Tongaat Hulett is striving to reconstruct its business to be innovative, resilient and cost effective. 

Company transforming  amid difficulties
TRANSFORMATION IN SIGHT The three main shareholders in Uzinzo hold 65%

Call for polymer, plastics industries to be declared essential as lockdown looms

By: Donna Slater     25th March 2020 South African plastics industry representative organisation Plastics SA has called on government to reclassify some sectors within the broader plastics industry as essential service providers owing to its contribution to packaging essential items during the upcoming 21-day national lockdown.... 

Sappi declares force majeure on its Vulindlela project at Saiccor mill

By: Simone Liedtke     25th March 2020 JSE-listed paper and packaging company Sappi has declared force majeure on the Vulindlela dissolving pulp expansion and upgrade project at its Saiccor Mill in alignment with the government’s declaration of a nationwide lockdown to combat the spread of Covid-19. Sappi on March 25 said the project... 

SA manufacturing sector has small window to safeguard itself against Covid-19

By: African News Agency      25th March 2020 While the containment of the coronavirus (Covid-19) remains the biggest priority of governments and health organisations, its effects on businesses are starting to take their toll, a South African based management consulting firm says. Principal at Kearney, Sujeet Morar, says as cities start to... 

SA manufacturing sector has small window to safeguard itself against Covid-19

Ministers announce Covid-19 business support measures  

By: Marleny Arnoldi     24th March 2020 Amid government’s strategy to “flatten the curve” of Coronavirus infections, government departments have shared more details on the measures that would be implemented to support businesses during the national declared lockdown time and afterwards. Health Minister Zweli Mkhize delivered an... 

Ministers announce Covid-19 business support measures
Photo by Creamer Media
Trade and Industry Minister Ebrahim Patel

Clothing industry reaches agreement to safeguard industry, workers

By: Donna Slater     24th March 2020 South Africa's first Covid-19 lockdown national collective agreement for the clothing and textiles industry was expedited and ratified by the end of March 23. The agreement was formulated by the National Bargaining Council for the Clothing Manufacturing Industry in South Africa.  

Mpact postpones dividend payment amid Covid-19 national lockdown uncertainties

By: Donna Slater     24th March 2020 Plastics, paper and packaging manufacturer Mpact is postponing its payment of its cash dividends for the 2019 financial year by five months, in light of uncertainties brought about by the national 21-day lockdown. This is expected to help preserve the company’s financial liquidity.  

Opinion: War declared during peacetime

By: Donna Slater     24th March 2020 The outbreak of coronavirus in every continent (except Antarctica) has resulted in a war-time mobilisation of national assets and resources, as well as a shift in production by some companies from their core products to the manufacture of products that can support the fight against the... 

Opinion: War declared during peacetime
Photo by Reuters
Members of the South African National Defence Force gather at the premises of the Rand Light Infantry in Craighall Park on March 23 in preparedness for mobilisation to help enforce the presidents national lockdown.

Ten-minute coronavirus test for $1 could be game changer

By: Bloomberg     20th March 2020 Already exhausted from testing for monkeypox and Lassa fever, Nigerian molecular bio-engineer Nnaemeka Ndodo had to work well past midnight earlier this month to find out if six Chinese construction workers were infected with the coronavirus. Ndodo had to collect samples from a hospital an hour... 

Gin makers bottle hand sanitiser for vulnerable as coronavirus spreads

By: Reuters     20th March 2020 Small gin distilleries across Britain have started producing hand sanitiser to help vulnerable people protect themselves from coronavirus amid a national shortage in a trend mirrored across the globe from Australia to the United States. Australian cricketer Shane Warne announced on Thursday that... 

Supplier provides quality equipment for optimum productivity

20th March 2020 Industrial equipment supplier BMG’s service to the agriculture sector focuses on the importance of investing in quality equipment and components for high efficiencies and optimum productivity across all farming disciplines. “The highly-experienced BMG team offers farming sustainability solutions... 

Supplier provides quality equipment for optimum productivity
TOUGH CONDITIONS BMG supplies Tsubaki RS100HT heavy-duty reinforced roller chain to meet the high-volume capacity of agricultural machinery in tough operating conditions

Cluster emphasises importance of local manufacturing

By: Halima Frost     20th March 2020 It is of utmost importance to be able to draw a definitive line between locally manufactured and imported products in the South African pumps sector, as locally manufactured products need to take precedence over imports in projects, says industry association South African Pump Cluster chairperson... 

Cluster emphasises importance of local manufacturing
HOWARD JONES There is a need for a definitive line between locally manufactured and imported products in the South African pumps sector

Facility upgrades help to ramp up supply

By: Halima Frost     20th March 2020 Local high pressure pump supplier Werner South Africa Pumps & Equipment has successfully improved its turnaround time from between four and six months to between two and three months to manufacture a truck mounted pump system, depending on the unit ordered. “This is subsequent to the... 

Facility upgrades help to  ramp up supply
UNDER THE PUMP Werner Pumps has managed to increase its turnaround time, to relieve the pressure of increased demand, by upgrading its facilities

Pump failures at mine addressed

20th March 2020 Last month, mechanical seal and pump supplier Mechanical Rotating Solutions (MRS) was asked to address the multiple failures experienced by a coal mine in Mpumalanga as a result of coupling misalignment between the pump shaft and the motor shaft. MRS MD Franscois Steenkamp suggests that after... 

Pump failures  at mine addressed
SHAFTED A misalignment between the pump and motor shafts had been causing failures at a coal mine

Chamber launches Small Business Relief Centre

By: Marleny Arnoldi     19th March 2020 The National Small Business Chamber (NSBC) has launched a Covid-19 Small Business Relief Centre to assist businesses during this crisis. The centre collaborates with experts in various business fields, which should help small businesses weather the storm successfully.  

Covid-19 : manufacturers urged to scrutinise supply chains

By: Marleny Arnoldi     19th March 2020 The Coronavirus’ (Covid-19's) unpredictability and global reach has caused a supply chain shock that will undoubtedly cut into worldwide manufacturing revenue, which is currently forecasted to be $15-trillion this year, says technology market advisory firm ABI Research. The firm points out that... 

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