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State Companies News

Trade union takes Denel to court over nonpayment of salaries

By: Rebecca Campbell     29th May 2020 Trade union UASA announced that it has started legal action against State-owned defence industrial group Denel. This is because the company has failed to pay its employees their salaries on the agreed date of May 25. Denel informed the union that it would also not be able to pay its staff in June... 

PIC proposes converting Eskom bonds into equity - chairperson

By: Reuters     28th May 2020 South African state asset manager the Public Investment Corporation (PIC) has submitted a proposal to government on converting bonds it holds in struggling state utility Eskom into equity, PIC chairperson Reuel Khoza told Reuters in an interview. Khoza said the PIC had discussed the proposal with... 

South Africa's Eskom sees lower risk of power cuts during winter 

By: Reuters     28th May 2020 South Africa's state-owned power utility Eskom expects only 3 days of stage one power cuts, where up to 1 000 megawatts is taken off the national grid, during the winter period when demand increases, the chief executive officer said on Wednesday. "We anticipate three days of stage one... 

South Africa's Eskom sees lower risk of power cuts during winter
Photo by Donna Slater
Eskom CEO Andre de Ruyter

Sithole appointed PIC chief

By: Marleny Arnoldi     27th May 2020 The Ministry of Finance on May 27 announced that Cabinet had approved its recommendation of appointing Abel Moffat Sithole as CEO and nonexecutive director of the Public Investment Corporation (PIC), for a period of five years. Sithole is currently the principal executive officer of the... 

SAA will not be resuming flights just yet, say BRPs

By: Simone Liedtke     27th May 2020 A press statement issued this week, which suggests that South African Airways (SAA) will resume domestic services by mid-June, is “incorrect” and in violation of SAA’s business rescue practitioners’ (BRP’s) communications protocol. The protocol was put in place to ensure that unvetted releases... 

SAA will not be resuming flights just yet, say BRPs

Reports of CEF acquiring Sasol’s fuel retail network dismissed

By: Terence Creamer     27th May 2020 Chemicals and energy group Sasol has dismissed reports that it plans to sell its fuel retail business as part of an ongoing asset disposal process, while the State-owned Central Energy Fund (CEF) has described as “malicious” reports that it is in talks to acquire Sasol’s petrol stations. Sasol... 

Reports of CEF acquiring Sasol’s fuel retail network dismissed
Photo by Creamer Media's Donna Slater
Sasol CFO Paul Victor

Bid documents for 2 000-MW emergency power being finalised after Nersa concurrence ‘milestone’  

By: Terence Creamer     26th May 2020 The Department of Mineral Resources and Energy (DMRE) confirmed on Tuesday that the National Energy Regulator of South Africa (Nersa) had concurred with a Ministerial determination submitted to the regulator in February for the procurement of 2 000 MW of emergency electricity from independent... 

Bid documents for 2 000-MW emergency power being finalised after Nersa concurrence ‘milestone’
IPP Office working on scheme to procure 128 MW of additional energy from existing wind and solar farms

SAA getting ready to restart domestic flying

By: Rebecca Campbell     26th May 2020 State-owned national flag carrier South African Airways (SAA) is making preparations for the resumption of domestic air flights, between Johannesburg and Cape Town. It is seeking to be operationally ready for the the restart of this route in the middle of next month, should this be authorised.... 

Transnet reports recovery in some units, but still expects big Covid-19 revenue hit 

By: Terence Creamer     26th May 2020 State-owned freight logistics group Transnet reports that there has been a recovery in some of its operations since the easing of lockdown restrictions and is increasing tending towards an “optimistic” recovery scenario for many of its units – a scenario that assumes a ramp-up to full operations... 

Transnet reports recovery in some units, but still expects big Covid-19 revenue hit

BRPs granted leave to appeal interdict against retrenchments at SAA

By: Rebecca Campbell     26th May 2020 The Labour Court, sitting in Johannesburg, has granted the Business Rescue Practitioners (BRPs) for financially-beleaguered State-owned national flag carrier South African Airways (SAA) leave to appeal against the whole of a Labour Court judgment handed down on May 8. In that judgment, the court... 

Construction sector survival requires fresh approach

By: Mamaili Mamaila     22nd May 2020 The survival of the construction industry will depend on the willingness and ability of individuals and organisations to adapt to a new way of working, as well government’s commitment to address the threats highlighted by the sector, University of Pretoria (UP) Graduate School of Technology... 

Construction sector survival requires fresh approach
DECISIVE ACTION For the construction industry to thrive, opportunism will need to be dealt with immediately and decisively

Pandemic, economic challenges to shape industry direction

By: Mamaili Mamaila     22nd May 2020 Industry trends are likely to take a new direction because of the global Covid-19 pandemic and a severely constrained local economy, says steel and value-added steel products merchandiser and distributor Macsteel. 

Pandemic, economic challenges to shape industry direction
MIKE BENFIELD The construction and steel sectors – including the larger manufacturing industry – are “hand-in-glove”

Built-environment growth a focus for regulator

By: Mamaili Mamaila     22nd May 2020 The National Regulator for Compulsory Specifications (NRCS) has its sights set on accelerating growth in and strengthening its partnerships with the construction sector. 

Built-environment growth a focus for regulator
TOWING THE LINE The National Regulator for Compulsory Specifications’ National Building Regulations division assists with the upkeep of the National Building Regulations and Building Standards Act

Pandemic heightens existing construction sector woes

By: Mamaili Mamaila     22nd May 2020 Challenges in the construction sector will continue to prevail if construction sites remain closed, owing to South Africa’s national lockdown, says Association of South African Quantity Surveyors (ASAQS) president Christelle Bown. 

Pandemic heightens existing construction sector woes
CHRISTELLE BOWN It is important to address the difficulties caused by the onerous conditions prescribed when tendering for professional services

Eskom committed to ‘aggressive’ end-2021 unbundling timeline  

By: Terence Creamer     21st May 2020 Eskom CEO Andre de Ruyter describes as “aggressive” the end-of-2021 deadline for completing the unbundling of the vertically integrated power utility but insisted on Thursday that he was fully committed to adhering to the timeline contained in government’s restructuring roadmap. During a virtual... 

Eskom committed to ‘aggressive’ end-2021 unbundling timeline
Eskom CEO Andre de Ruyter on how Eskom plan to recover from its current downward trajectory. Camera Work: Kutlwano Matlala. Editing: Nicholas Boyd

Union blasts Denel for last-minute unilateral three-month salary cut

By: Rebecca Campbell     21st May 2020 Trade union UASA announced on May 21 that it was “rejecting” the letter sent out by South Africa’s State-owned defence industrial group Denel’s CEO Danie du Toit in which he announced that the company would not be paying its employees for the next three months (May, June and July). The union... 

Eskom CEO sees sustainable future if R450bn debt pile can be slashed

By: Reuters     21st May 2020 The chief executive of South Africa's Eskom said on Thursday the State power utility could become financially viable and do without government bailouts if it could more than halve its debt to R200-billion. Eskom has about R450-billion of debt and is mired in financial crisis as it does not... 

Controversial plan to renegotiate IPP tariffs is proceeding, De Ruyter confirms  

By: Terence Creamer     21st May 2020 Eskom CEO Andre de Ruyter has confirmed that the State-owned electricity utility is pushing ahead with a controversial move to renegotiate power purchase agreements with renewable independent power producers. Speaking during a briefing on May 21, De Ruyter said that the renegotiation of IPP... 

Controversial plan to renegotiate IPP tariffs is proceeding, De Ruyter confirms
Photo by Creamer Media's Donna Slater
Eskom CEO Andre de Ruyter

As Eskom rolls out boiler fixes to more Medupi units, it confirms FGD talks with World Bank 

By: Terence Creamer     21st May 2020 Electricity utility Eskom is rolling-out design modifications made recently to Medupi Unit 3 to Medupi Unit 6, rather than waiting for the results of an evaluation of the fixes, which is proceeding in parallel. The unit was shut for 75 days on January 26 to address defects that emerged, mostly in... 

As Eskom rolls out boiler fixes to more Medupi units, it confirms FGD talks with World Bank
COO Jan Oberholzer on the rolling-out of design modifications at Medupi. Camera Work: Kutlwano Matlala. Editing: Nicholas Boyd

Nuclear corporation briefs Parliamentarians on its 12-month, 5- and 10-year objectives

By: Rebecca Campbell     20th May 2020 In a briefing to the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Mineral Resources and Energy on May 20, the South African Nuclear Energy Corporation (Necsa) stated that it would achieve a turnover of more than R2-billion during the 2021 financial year (FY), but nevertheless expected a net loss of... 

Airports Company concerned about state of airline sector

By: Rebecca Campbell     19th May 2020 Airports Company South Africa (Acsa) was concerned about the sustainability of the world’s airlines. The global commercial aviation sector was being hit very hard by the Covid-19 pandemic and the measures being taken to counter it, which had seen massive decreases in commercial air traffic... 

Eskom describes Nersa’s treatment of coal costs in latest RCA claim as ‘significant shift’ 

By: Terence Creamer     18th May 2020 State-owned electricity group Eskom says the National Energy Regulator of South Africa’s (Nersa’s) latest regulatory clearing account (RCA) determination for the 2018/19 financial year contains “some encouraging decisions”, highlighting its treatment of coal costs as representing a particularly... 

Eskom describes Nersa’s treatment of coal costs in latest RCA claim as ‘significant shift’

ACSA warns of Covid-19 impacts and that it might need government guarantees

By: Rebecca Campbell     18th May 2020 The State-owned Airports Company South Africa (ACSA) has warned the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Transport that the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic and the efforts to counter it would significantly affect it. The company’s Corporate Plan for the 2020/2021 to 2022/2023 financial years had... 

Planned move to Level 3 lockdown positive, but longer-term foresight urgently needed

By: Donna Slater     18th May 2020 The National Economic Development and Labour Council (Nedlac) reports that its constituencies are working sectorally and collectively to migrate South Africa to Level 3 of the national lockdown. President Cyril Ramaphosa addressed the nation on May 13, stating that lockdown regulations would be... 

Planned move to Level 3 lockdown positive, but longer-term foresight urgently needed
Photo by Creamer Media's Donna Slater
BLSA CEO Busi Mavuso

Unions attack SAA business rescue practitioners, management 

By: Rebecca Campbell     18th May 2020 Three unions representing employees of financially embattled State-owned national flag carrier South African Airways (SAA) have attacked the airline’s business rescue practitioners (BRPs) and its senior management. They are the National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa), the SAA... 

Gordhan and SAA business rescue practitioners trade barbs over rescue plan

By: African News Agency      15th May 2020  MPs on Friday heard from South African Airways's business rescue practitioners that a lack of funding severely hampered their work, while Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan questioned their spending decisions and their future objectives for the stricken national carrier. Siviwe Dongwana,... 

PRASA appoints new CFO

By: Marleny Arnoldi     15th May 2020 The Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA) has appointed Krishna Govender CFO, effective immediately. Govender is a chartered accountant and has almost 25 years’ experience in accounting and financial management, which he gained from various entities in both the public and private... 

PRASA appoints new CFO
PRASA CFO Krishna Govender

Local procurement lags in public, private sectors

By: Mamaili Mamaila     15th May 2020 A prevailing issue facing the valves sector is the “poor attitude” to local procurement in the public and private sectors, says valves manufacturer RGR Technologies commercial director Ross Hunter. 

Local procurement lags  in public, private sectors
MAPPING THE WAY FORWARD RGR Technologies looks forward to slowly introducing three-dimensional printing into its processes to assist with the manufacture of valve parts

Valves maintenance still a challenge

By: Mamaili Mamaila     15th May 2020 Although demand for valves has increased over the past five years, maintenance costs, efficiency and valve service life are some of the challenges that companies face yearly, says coating technology specialist Thermaspray’s laser cladding manager Jordaan Lourens. 

Valves maintenance  still a challenge
IRREPLACEABLE SOLUTIONS The initial coating of new valves as well as their efficient repair results in fewer valve replacements

Unions Numsa and Sacca strongly denounce SAA BRPs

By: Rebecca Campbell     14th May 2020 Two of the trade unions which represent employees at the financially embattled State-owned airline South African Airways (SAA), the National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa) and the South African Cabin Crew Association (Sacca) have condemned “in the strongest terms” the decision by... 

Cape Town in landmark suit to open South Africa’s power system

By: Bloomberg     13th May 2020 The city of Cape Town is awaiting a court ruling on whether it can buy its own electricity from suppliers other than national power utility Eskom Holdings without getting approval from the energy minister. Judge Leonie Windell of South Africa’s High Court on Tuesday reserved judgment in the case... 

CEF denies nine ‘requests’ for support amount to a bailout 

By: Terence Creamer     12th May 2020 South Africa’s State-owned Central Energy Fund (CEF) has outlined an extensive list of support measures – including access to a portion of the fuel levy and carbon-tax proceeds – which it argued on Tuesday would help extricate the group from a “precarious financial position”, precipitated by... 

CEF denies nine ‘requests’ for support amount to a bailout
Photo by Creamer Media
The PetroSA refinery in Mossel Bay

SAA failing to pay tax deducted from staff salaries to Sars

By: African News Agency      12th May 2020 South African Airways has not paid over the income tax the company deducted from its employees to the South African Revenue Service and is therefore in breach of the bailout conditions imposed on it by the National Treasury, the Democratic Alliance said on Tuesday. The stricken airline's failure... 

 SAA failing to pay tax deducted from staff salaries to Sars

SAA rescue team to appeal court ruling on layoffs 

By: Reuters     11th May 2020 Administrators trying save South African Airways will appeal a court ruling that ordered them to halt a layoff process, one of the administrators Siviwe Dongwana told Reuters. The Labour Court's decision to side with two trade unions in its judgment on Friday was a major blow to the... 

SAA rescue team to appeal court ruling on layoffs

SAA to continue operating repatriation and cargo flights

By: Rebecca Campbell     8th May 2020 State-owned national flag carrier South African Airways (SAA) has assured that it had no plans to stop operating on May 8. It would continue to honour all its current commitments to provide air transport services to its customers, as well as any other requests that it might receive. It continued... 

PRASA turnaround under way despite delays

By: Simone Liedtke     7th May 2020 The turnaround of State-owned Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA) is on track, albeit with delays, in part owing to the situation brought about by the Covid-19 pandemic, administrator Bongisizwe Mpondo has revealed. In a webinar on May 7, he lamented that the passenger rail agency had... 

PRASA turnaround under way despite delays

PRASA operations to resume under lockdown Level 3 

By: Simone Liedtke     7th May 2020 The Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa’s (PRASA’s) operations are set to resume under Lockdown Alert Level 3, administrator Bongisizwe Mpondo confirmed in a webinar on May 7. The passenger rail agency terminated all services during the initial lockdown period (Level 5), and has continued to do... 

PRASA operations to resume under lockdown Level 3
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