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Trade News

Association laments sector decline

By: Mamaili Mamaila     11th September 2020 The aerospace manufacturing sector is in a “freefall” and there does not appear to be any parachute in sight, says industry body Commercial Aerospace Manufacturing Association of South Africa (Camasa) co-chairperson Themba September. 

Significant potential exists for local capital equipment exporters

By: Donna Slater     10th September 2020 South African Capital Equipment Exporters Council (Saceec) director and CEO Eric Bruggeman has pointed out that South African capital equipment exporters had exported R178-billion worth of capital equipment during 2019. Saceec members accounted for about R50-billion, or just under 30%, of that... 

Significant potential exists for local capital equipment exporters

Global trading platform key to unlocking competitiveness of green hydrogen 

By: Terence Creamer     9th September 2020 International cooperation will be key to unlocking the competitive production of green hydrogen as global trade will be required to link those countries, such as South Africa, that are best suited to producing the energy carrier, using a combination of low-cost renewable energy, water and... 

Global trading platform key to unlocking competitiveness of green hydrogen

RMB/BER business confidence index rebounds in line with eased Covid-19 restrictions

By: Donna Slater     9th September 2020 After falling from 18 to an all-time low of five in the second quarter, the Rand Merchant Bank (RMB)/Bureau for Economic Research (BER) business confidence index (BCI) rebounded to 24 in the third quarter. However, the BER states that, from such a low base, when the strictest of the Alert Level... 

FMF appoints chairperson and deputy

By: Donna Slater     9th September 2020 The Free Market Foundation (FMF) has elected Lawrence Mavundla chairperson during its first meeting of the new board following its election at the FMF annual general meeting on July 29. He is supported by deputy chairperson Johanna McDowall.  

FMF appoints chairperson and deputy
Free Market Foundation chairperson Lawrence Mavundla

140 UK, KwaZulu-Natal companies to participate in online trade mission

By: Yvonne Silaule     8th September 2020 About 140 companies from the UK and KwaZulu-Natal will be participating in a virtual online trade mission, which will be led by Tourism and Environmental Affairs MEC Nomusa Dube-Ncube. “Following the onset of Covid-19 and the limitations on international travel, the department has embarked on an... 

Lesotho aims to ‘go big’ on agriculture amid Agoa textiles uncertainty 

By: Terence Creamer     4th September 2020 Lesotho Prime Minister Dr Moeketsi Majoro reports that the country aims to overhaul its underperforming agricultural sector with the objective of improving both food security and attracting export-oriented investment into the production of high-value crops, such as fruit, vegetables and... 

Lesotho aims to ‘go big’ on agriculture amid Agoa textiles uncertainty
Lesotho Prime Minister Dr Moeketsi Majoro

Economic recovery to gain traction in summer − Cline

By: Donna Slater     4th September 2020 Major sectors of South Africa’s economy will begin to recover from a Covid-19-induced slump as the country heads into spring and summer – a trend that was evidenced through Europe’s experience with Covid-19, says financial services company Investec corporate accounts head Dr Greg Cline. “[As] in... 

Economic recovery to gain traction in summer − Cline
Investec corporate accounts head Dr Greg Cline

Partnership backs African market

4th September 2020 Partnerships such as Austin ETT are structured to offer customers products and services across a broader spectrum. The joint venture between Australia-based engineering company Austin Engineering and South African specialised mobile equipment manufacturer Engineering Top Tech (ETT) brings... 

Partnership backs African market
STRONGER TOGETHER The Austin ETT joint venture provides a single platform from which the Austin Engineering and Engineering Top Tech can jointly market, sell and support their products throughout Africa

Long-term demand structure for petroleum unclear

By: Darren Parker     4th September 2020 It is expected that the Covid-19 pandemic will continue to negatively affect liquid fuels demand in the short term, but whether this represents a long-term structural shift is not yet clear, says South African Petroleum Industry Association (Sapia) executive director Avhapfani Tshifularo. Before... 

Long-term demand structure for petroleum unclear
Photo by Adobe
NO NEED TO IMPORT Reduced demand will see South Africa becoming somewhat self-sufficient in terms of fuels production if all refineries are operational

Localisation key to economic recovery

By: Tracy Hancock     4th September 2020 Localisation should be the main driver of South Africa’s economic recovery following the Covid-19 outbreak, says diversified engineering company Pamodzi Unique Engineering CEO Sindi Dlamini. The Boksburg-based broad-based black economic-empowerment Level 1 company designs, manufactures and... 

Localisation key to economic recovery
INTERNATIONALLY ACTIVE Pamodzi Unique Engineering has supplied off-road pantographs to the US, Panama, Belgium, Zambia, Namibia and recently Russia

Council adapting to Covid-19 chokehold

By: Tracy Hancock     4th September 2020 The South African Capital Equipment Export Council (SACEEC) is adopting new technological solutions to meet its goals of growing its membership and exports this year despite the Covid-19 outbreak, says SACEEC chairperson Benny Jiyane. Amid the pandemic, six new members have joined SACEEC, which... 

Council adapting to Covid-19 chokehold
CAPITAL IDEA The South African Capital Equipment Export Council has launched a virtual product showroom in collaboration with Creamer Media on September 4 to promote member company products

Absa PMI rises to 57.3 index points as Covid-19 restrictions ease 

By: Donna Slater     1st September 2020 Pointing to a further improvement in conditions in South Africa’s manufacturing sector, the Absa Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI)  increased to 57.3 index points in August, up from 51.2 in July, in line with Covid-19 lockdown restrictions easing further to Level 2 in August. This resulted in... 

New ‘single channel’ service created to help resolve barriers to South African exports 

By: Terence Creamer     31st August 2020 The Department of Trade, Industry and Competition (DTIC) has launched a new ‘single channel’ online service through which South African exporters are able to register any problems they are experiencing in their trade interactions and secure dedicated support from government to resolve concerns.... 

 New ‘single channel’ service created to help resolve barriers to South African exports

DTIC to launch Export Barriers Monitoring Mechanism

By: Simone Liedtke     28th August 2020 The Department of Trade, Industry and Competition (DTIC) will launch the Export Barriers Monitoring Mechanism (EBMM) on August 31. The EBMM will be a single channel for companies to report and receive assistance in resolving export barriers, the department said in a statement on August 28. 

Noncarbon future epitomises ideal energy mix

By: Mamaili Mamaila     21st August 2020 In about 2060, the ideal energy mix would be one with only non-carbon sources, such as wind, solar, pumped hydro and hydrogen, says global energy advisory UL. 

Noncarbon future epitomises ideal  energy mix
JAMES TRUDEAU It is “very critical” that Eskom increases its energy storage capacities to support a more diversified energy portfolio

Divisionalisation first step in vertical separation

By: Mamaili Mamaila     21st August 2020 State-owned power utility Eskom says divisionalisation is but the “first step” in the vertical separation of the utility into three businesses under Eskom Holdings and that it is aligned with the restructuring roadmap released by the Department of Public Enterprises. 

Divisionalisation first step in vertical separation
Photo by Creamer Media's Donna Slater
SLIGHT UNCERTAINTY The outcomes from the Independent Electricity Management Operator Bill will impact the future of both the supply and demand dynamics of the electricity industry

Clean coal can still play meaningful role in S Africa

By: Mamaili Mamaila     21st August 2020 Coal is relatively cheap and widely available; therefore, if it is used cleanly and efficiently, it can be a vital part of the economic development of South Africa, says the IEA Clean Coal Centre (IEACCC). 

Clean coal can still play meaningful role in S Africa
Photo by Creamer Media
GROWTH POINT About 18 000 jobs were created during the peak of construction at Eskom’s Medupi power plant

CFBC boiler technology viable for S Africa

By: Mamaili Mamaila     21st August 2020 The global success of circulating fluidised bed combustion (CFBC) boiler technology, suggests that this should be the technology of choice for the future in State-owned power utility Eskom’s power stations. 

CFBC boiler technology viable for S Africa
SMOKE STACKS The emissions of concern in coal-fired technology are carbon dioxide, sulphur oxide, nitrogen oxide and particulates (usually fly ash of various sizes)

Country recovering slowly from distorted lockdown trade conditions, say Sacci

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     19th August 2020 The continuing lockdown has deepened the recessionary economic conditions and further distorted trade conditions, says the South African Chamber of Commerce and Industry (Sacci). It adds that the selected restrictive approach towards certain types of trade, especially during the hard lockdown... 

AfCFTA commissions Ghanaian secretariat

By: Donna Slater     18th August 2020 The first permanent secretariat of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) was commissioned in Accra, Ghana, on August 18, with Ghana President Nana Akufo-Addo and Africa Union (AU) Commission chairperson Moussa Mahamat reiterating the importance of the body to the continent’s economic... 

Competition Tribunal approves Senwesbel merger

By: Donna Slater     18th August 2020 The Competition Tribunal has issued an order approving the proposed merger between investment holdings company Senwesbel, its subsidiary agricultural business Senwes, and agricultural company Suidwes Holdings. This follows merger proceedings during which the tribunal heard evidence and arguments... 

Now is time for swift action to kickstart economy – B4SA

By: Donna Slater     17th August 2020 Business for South Africa (B4SA) has welcomed President Cyril Ramaphosa’s announcement to move the country to Covid-19 Alert Level 2, which will enable South African businesses and entrepreneurs to resume trading in virtually all sectors of the economy.   B4SA steering co-chairperson Martin... 

Alcohol industry welcomes lifting of alcohol sales ban, counts losses

By: Donna Slater     17th August 2020 Both stakeholders in the South African alcohol industry and wine industry representative organisation Vinpro have welcomed government’s decision to lift the ban on alcohol sales as part of the move to Alert Level 2, which comes into effect at midnight on Monday. Vinpro states that the wine... 

Covid-19 severely impacts business confidence, unemployment

By: Donna Slater     17th August 2020 Strategy and investment consulting firm Singular Group says the Covid-19 pandemic has severely impacted South Africa’s economy, to such an extent that business confidence is at an all-time low, 22% lower than during the 2008 global financial crisis and currently ranking in the 8% range. During... 

World’s biggest free-trade pact targets first deal in 2021

By: Bloomberg     16th August 2020 The first commercial deal under an Africa-wide free trade zone will take place on January 1 as outstanding talks are set to move online, the African Union said. While the African Continental Free Trade Area entered into force legally last year, transactions that were due to start on July 1 were... 

Greater collaboration needed in steel supply chain

By: Darren Parker     14th August 2020 To ensure security of steel supply, the South African Institute for Steel Construction (SAISC) is calling for greater collaboration among all players in the local steel supply chain, from upstream producers to downstream merchants. Local steel demand was low before the Covid-19 pandemic, which... 

Greater collaboration needed  in steel supply chain
Photo by Adobe
RELIABLE ROLLOUT? The security of steel supply is a key concern for downstream merchants and fabricators

Growthpoint completes Lakeside Mall redevelopment

By: Donna Slater     13th August 2020 Property developer Growthpoint Properties has introduced two new anchor tenants − Pick n Pay and Dis-Chem − to the Lakeside Mall, in Benoni, Gauteng. This follows the completion of the final phase of a three-year, R135-million upgrade. The reconfigured space represents 4 900 m2 of gross... 

Growthpoint completes Lakeside Mall redevelopment

Competition Tribunal confirms another settlement in maize cartel case

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     12th August 2020 The Competition Tribunal has confirmed a settlement agreement between the Competition Commission and GWK Farm Foods, in which the company admits to its involvement in a maize milling cartel and agrees to pay an administrative penalty of R10-million. This is the fourteenth settlement agreement to... 

PIC appoint acting CIO

By: Donna Slater     7th August 2020 State-owned asset management firm the Public Investment Corporation (PIC) has appointed Sholto Dolamo as acting chief investment officer (CIO) with effect from August 6. He is PIC research and projects development executive head and a member of the PIC executive committee.  

Australia views resources resilience as core to post-pandemic recovery

By: Esmarie Iannucci     7th August 2020 The onset of the Covid-19 pandemic early in 2020 completely changed the global social and economic landscape, causing travel restrictions and physical distancing precautions in an effort to halt the spread of the virus. Commodity prices, specifically that of oil and oil price-linked liquefied... 

Australia views resources resilience as core to post-pandemic recovery

EIB, Afreximbank direct €300m of support to Africa's Covid-19 response 

By: Donna Slater     6th August 2020 The European Investment Bank (EIB), an arm of the European Union, and multilateral trade finance institution, the African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank), are directing €300-million of financing to support the resilience and recovery of African nations in response to the Covid-19 pandemic. The... 

Gauteng High Court rules in favour of government on localisation matter

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     5th August 2020 The Gauteng High Court recently ruled in favour of government in a matter involving procurement conditions applicable to electrical transformers. The challenge arises from a government decision to refuse an exemption from a localisation condition to enable imports of electrical transformers on... 

Absa revises GDP forecast on better-than-expected data

By: Donna Slater     4th August 2020 Based on better-than-expected data arising from the first and second quarters of the year, financial services company Absa has revised down its forecast for the gross domestic product (GDP) contraction this year from 9.7% previously, to 8.3%. However, Absa notes that taking into account the... 

Western Cape government welcomes decongestion efforts at the Port of Cape Town

By: Donna Slater     4th August 2020 Following urgent action and interventions to decrease congestion and improve operations at the Port of Cape Town, the Western Cape provincial government has welcomed action taken through its ongoing engagements with Transnet Port Terminals (TPT) management. The Western Cape government states that... 

Neasa approaches High Court to stop new steel import duties

By: Marleny Arnoldi     3rd August 2020 The National Employers’ Association of South Africa (Neasa) has filed an urgent application in the Gauteng High Court to stop the implementation by the International Trade Administration Commission of South Africa (Itac) of a 10% import tariff and custom duties on coated flat-rolled products.... 

African Continental Free Trade Area could boost regional income by $450bn by 2035 

By: Terence Creamer     27th July 2020 The African Continental Free Trade Area could, a new World Bank report asserts, boost regional income by 7%, or $450-billion, by 2035 and help offset the negative effects of the Covid-19 pandemic, which is expected to cause up to $79-billion in output losses in Africa this year. If fully... 

African Continental Free Trade Area could boost regional income by $450bn by 2035
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