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State Companies News

Eskom CEO bemoans slow pace of talks on cutting R402bn debt

By: Bloomberg     20th September 2021 Talks about reducing the South African state power utility’s R402-billion debt to a manageable level are taking too long, its CEO Andre de Ruyter said. Eskom Holdings, which produces most of South Africa’s power, can’t meet its running and debt service costs and is dependent on government... 

PetroSA mulls geothermal as way to offset ‘decommissioning liability monster’ 

By: Terence Creamer     17th September 2021 Embattled State-owned gas-to-liquids refiner PetroSA is considering plans to harness geothermal energy from its mature or depleted gas wells to produce electricity and delay decommissioning. Addressing a conference in Cape Town this week, Central Energy Fund (CEF) CEO Dr Ishmael Poolo reported... 

PetroSA refinery in Mossel Bay
Photo by Creamer Media
PetroSA refinery in Mossel Bay

State-owned defence group to pay trade union millions in salary arrears 

By: Rebecca Campbell     17th September 2021 Trade union Solidarity announced on Friday that financially-embattled State-owned defence industrial group Denel had just paid it R4-million. The money is to cover the salary arrears of union members employed by Denel Dynamics and Denel Land Systems. “The payment of the salary money to Solidarity... 

SAA will need upgraded fleet to compete outside Africa, CEO says

By: Bloomberg     16th September 2021 South African Airways will need a more modern fleet to be competitive on routes outside its home continent following the Covid-19 crisis, according to interim CEO Thomas Kgokolo. The State-owned airline, poised to resume flights after emerging from bankruptcy proceedings, used to generate revenue... 

A photo of SAA's logo

Net-zero goal could be new ‘shared vision that binds’ South Africa 

By: Terence Creamer     14th September 2021 A just transition towards net-zero carbon emissions by 2050 offers significant opportunities for a new growth path built on green industrialisation and could provide the anchor for a new “shared vision that binds us”, former Deputy Finance Minister and State Capture whistle-blower Mcebisi Jonas... 

Photo of Mcebisi Jonas
Photo by Creamer Media
Mcebisi Jonas

Eskom evacuates staff who hid in locked Ga-Rankuwa offices to escape angry residents

By: News24Wire      14th September 2021 Power utility Eskom safely evacuated its employees that it claimed were being held against their will by angry residents of Morula View in Mabopane, north of Pretoria, over the lack of power supply in the area. According to Eskom, the hostage situation followed the community's demand for the... 

Govt launches portal for businesses affected by unrest

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     14th September 2021 The South African government has launched an online Business Loss Portal for the registration of businesses that were affected by the unrest which took place during July 9 to 19 in KwaZulu-Natal, Gauteng and other affected areas in the country. As part of the relief package announced by President... 

South Africa’s green energy push hinges on R402bn debt fix

By: Bloomberg     14th September 2021 The head of South Africa’s State power utility needs to substantially reduce its R402-billion of debt to realise his vision of transforming the coal-addicted behemoth into a leading green-energy producer and create as many as 300 000 jobs in the process. Eskom Holdings supplies more than 90% of... 

Bids sought for socioeconomic study into Eskom’s coal repowering and repurposing plan 

By: Terence Creamer     13th September 2021 A global coalition set up to support countries in implementing the carbon-reduction pledges contained in their Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) has announced that it will fund a study to assess the socioeconomic impacts of the shutdown, repowering and repurposing of seven Eskom... 

Photo of a road to an Eskom power station
Photo by Creamer Media
Eskom to shut 11 000 MW of coal capacity by 2030

Competition Commission advances efforts to mitigate price gouging during pandemic  

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     10th September 2021 The Covid-19 pandemic has led to a spike in price gouging and complaints from customers, and the Competition Commission of South Africa had to, and continues to, focus efforts on mitigating this situation, and has learnt several lessons from this. This was indicated during the a webinar hosted by... 

An image of Competition Commission Litigation manager
Competition Commission Litigation manager Candice Slump outlines the CC‘s legal and practical approach to price gouging during the pandemic.

Eskom unbundling fails to cut solvency risk, Futuregrowth says

By: Bloomberg     9th September 2021 Futuregrowth Asset Management said that despite efforts to make South Africa’s Eskom Holdings profitable, including a process of unbundling its divisions into separate entities, “the core problem of debt” has yet to be addressed. The utility that reported a fourth straight full-year loss on Aug.... 

TNPA supports CDC to deliver key liquid bulk infrastructure for Nelson Mandela Bay

By: Simone Liedtke     9th September 2021 The Transnet National Ports Authority (TNPA) is encouraging Port Elizabeth Liquid Bulk Tankfarm tenants, as well as any other parties interested in securing liquid bulk storage capacity, to contact the Coega Development Corporation (CDC). This is premised on TNPA’s confirmation of its support and... 

Masondo raises R146bn South Africa debt forgiveness 

By: Bloomberg     7th September 2021 David Masondo, South Africa’s deputy finance minister, suggested that investors forgive about R146-billion of sovereign debt in exchange for the national power utility meeting climate targets. In order to transition from the use of coal to generate electricity to renewable energy Eskom Holdings... 

Sanral board embarks on recruitment drive for a CEO

By: Creamer Media Reporter      7th September 2021 The South African National Roads Agency Limited (Sanral) will embark on a recruitment process for a new CEO. The roads agency intends to recommend a suitable candidate for appointment as CEO to Transport Minister Fikile Mbalula before December 1. 

ANC offers strong endorsement of Eskom’s just energy transaction following lekgotla  

By: Terence Creamer     7th September 2021 The National Executive Committee (NEC) of the African National Congress (ANC) has given its backing to the just energy transaction being pursued by State-owned electricity producer Eskom. In closing remarks following the NEC’s September lekgotla, ANC president Cyril Ramaphosa said that the... 

Photo of the Komati power station
The Komati power station

Eskom debt remains a challenge as utility posts nearly R19bn loss  

3rd September 2021 Creamer Media's Chanel de Bruyn speaks to Engineering News Editor Terence Creamer about the nearly R19-billion loss posted by power utility Eskom for the 2021 financial year, as well as about Eskom's still-high debt levels and what impact this could have on the utility's just energy transition... 

Photo of Terence Creamer
Eskom debt remains a challenge as utility posts nearly R19bn loss

TFR approaches customers on security levy to raise funds for rapid security overhaul  

By: Terence Creamer     3rd September 2021 State-owned railway utility Transnet Freight Rail (TFR) is approaching its customers about instituting a three-year security levy, which will be used to raise the funding needed for the rapid deployment of technology-based security solutions across a network that is currently collapsing under the... 

A photo of a TFR locomotive

SAA buyer close to completing due diligence

By: Bloomberg     1st September 2021 South Africa said the private group looking to take a majority stake in the country’s dormant national airline is close to completing due diligence ahead of a planned resumption of flights later this month. The Takatso consortium has yet to identify any material issues that would scupper the... 

Eskom warns of ongoing injections unless solution is found to ‘unsustainable’ debt 

By: Terence Creamer     31st August 2021 State-owned power utility Eskom’s debt burden remains “unsustainable” despite an R81.9-billion reduction in its gross debt to R401.8-billion in the year to March 31, 2021, during which the entity remained a going concern only because of a R56-billion government injection. The utility reported a... 

Photo of CEO Andre de Ruyter
Photo by Creamer Media's Donna Slater
Eskom CEO Andre de Ruyter

SIU, Transnet welcome judgment against former Transnet exec

By: Simone Liedtke     31st August 2021 The Special Investigating Unit (SIU) and State-owned Transnet have welcomed the judgment handed down by Judge Lebogang Modiba at a special tribunal sitting on August 31, wherein former Transnet employee Herbert Msagala was instructed to pay back R26.4-million to Transnet. The special tribunal... 

Govt targets August next year, or sooner, for third-party rail access  

By: Irma Venter     30th August 2021 The current target date for enabling third-party operators in the rail-freight sector is August next year, says Dr Sean Phillips, head of National Treasury’s Operation Vulindlela unit. There are, however, ongoing efforts under way to speed up the time frame put on the table by Transnet, he adds. 

An image of a Transnet rail line

Grindrod targets port, rail projects in govt’s private sector participation drive  

By: Irma Venter     27th August 2021 Ports and logistics operator Grindrod is positioning itself to take part in the private sector participation (PSP) opportunities to be created by government in the rail and port sectors, says Grindrod Freight Services CEO Xolani Mbambo. “Government has called for international players to come and... 

Image of Grindrod CEO Andrew Waller
Andrew Waller

South African Airways to restart operations from Sept 23

By: Reuters     26th August 2021 South Africa's State-owned national carrier South African Airways (SAA) will restart flying between limited destinations from Sept. 23, it said on Twitter, a year after it halted operations as it failed to pay its debt. Last month the government had said that it was selling a 51% stake in the... 

Failure to heed warnings about a disease like Covid-19 a bigger risk than the disease itself – Whitfield

By: Donna Slater     24th August 2021 The major risk posed by Covid-19 is not the disease itself, but instead humankind’s inaction to heed calls that such an event could lead to the crippling of global economies and other systems, independent broadcaster, journalist and writer Bruce Whitfield said on August 24. He gave the keynote... 

Land Bank makes another loss, debt plan not yet finalised

By: Reuters     24th August 2021 South Africa's Land Bank made another loss in the year to the end of March and is yet to finalise a debt restructuring plan, the bank said on Tuesday. The state-owned agricultural bank, which defaulted on its debt in April 2020 and missed a restructuring deadline in March 2021, is one of a... 

Zimbabwe private power industry held up by currency dispute

By: Bloomberg     24th August 2021 Zimbabwe’s State electricity company is awaiting the outcome of international arbitration in a currency dispute with the country’s biggest private power producer that’s holding up other investments. Nyangani Renewable Energy, which operates solar and hydropower plants in Zimbabwe and Malawi, took... 

Economic recovery support interventions aim to mitigate unrest impact for businesses  

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     20th August 2021 The R3.75-billion economic recovery support package announced by Trade, Industry and Competition Minister Ebrahim Patel, represents a united front from entities for the restoration of businesses that were adversely affected during the violent looting and unrests that took place in KwaZulu-Natal... 

An image of police officers walking past property damaged in the July 2021 unrest in South Africa

Sanral board's term extended beyond August 31

By: Creamer Media Reporter      20th August 2021 Transport Minister Fikile Mbalula has extended the term of the South African National Roads Agency Limited (Sanral) board beyond August 31, until a new board is appointed. The Department of Transport is recruiting a new board and says the process will be concluded soon. 

Private sector participation at SA ports  

20th August 2021   Creamer Media's Chanel de Bruyn speaks to Engineering News Editor Terence Creamer about Transnet's plans to potentially introduce private sector participation at the ports of Durban and Ngqura and whether this may eventually extend to other ports and Transnet units. 

Image of Terence Creamer
Private sector participation at SA ports

Regional insurgency, internal unrest highlights importance of a strong, well-resourced defence industry

By: Schalk Burger     19th August 2021 The role the South African National Defence Force (SANDF) has played and plays in ensuring the internal and external security of South Africa has again highlighted the importance and necessity of having a strong Department of Defence (DoD) and a strong defence industry, South African Aerospace,... 

Derby optimistic port terminal operators will partner with Transnet at Durban and Ngqura  

By: Terence Creamer     18th August 2021 Transnet CEO Portia Derby says the State-owned freight logistics utility has had initial engagements with some international terminal operators and shipping companies regarding the potential to form partnerships to improve the performance of its container terminals at the ports of Durban and... 

Photo of Transnet CEO Portia Derby
Transnet CEO Portia Derby outlines the group's masterplan for the Port of Durban during a Toyota Wessels Institute for Manufacturing Studies webinar. Editing: Nicholas Boyd. Recorded: 18.8.2021

Richards Bay power outage affects TFR's services

By: Schalk Burger     13th August 2021 A power outage which occurred in the City of uMhlathuze, or Richards Bay, between the afternoon of August 12 and the early hours of August 13 has impacted on State-owned Transnet Freight Rail’s (TFR's) services in the area. The outage meant that the Richards Bay Coal Terminal was unable to... 

Eskom's Just Energy Transition initiatives  

13th August 2021 Creamer Media's Chanel de Bruyn speaks to Engineering News Editor Terence Creamer about power utility Eskom's plans for the repowering and repurposing of the Komati power station as part of a larger just energy transition project and financing plan. 

 	Image of Terence Creamer
Eskom's Just Energy Transition initiatives

Denel releases radical restructuring plan to make the business sustainable  

By: Rebecca Campbell     11th August 2021 Financially-beleaguered State-owned defence industrial group Denel announced on Wednesday a radical reorganisation, in an attempt to turn the business around. The plan also implied a significant downsizing of the group. Even so, Denel management only expected the group to return to profitability... 

An image of Denel's logo

Joburg mayor announces new MMCs

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     11th August 2021 The new City of Johannesburg mayor Jolidee Matongo on August 11 announced his ten Members of the Mayoral Committee (MMCs) – shortly after he was sworn-in. The appointment of the new MMCs is a result of consultations with the ongoing Government of Local Unity (GLU) partnership in the city. 

Solidarity welcomes investigation into Medupi Unit 4 explosion

By: Schalk Burger     10th August 2021 Trade union Solidarity says it supports State-owned power utility Eskom's investigation following an explosion at Unit 4 of the Medupi coal-fired power station, in Lephalale, on August 8. Eskom had confirmed on August 9 that the unit generator had been severely damaged in the explosion, which... 

Explosion damages Medupi's Unit 4

By: Creamer Media Reporter      9th August 2021 Power utility Eskom has confirmed that an explosion at the Medupi power station's Unit 4 generator on August 8 has resulted in extensive damage to the generator. Unit 4 had been on a short-term outage since August 6 and the explosion occurred during the displacement of hydrogen with carbon... 

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