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Trade News

AfDB hosts successful online business opportunity seminar

By: Marleny Arnoldi     30th April 2020 The African Development Bank (AfDB) on April 28 hosted the first of its two business opportunity seminars for the year. The seminar provided information to potential partners and contractors on the bank’s strategic priorities and procurement procedures.  

Productivity SA proposes economic recovery plan

By: Donna Slater     29th April 2020 Employment growth and productivity promotion agency Productivity SA has drawn up a document to potentially address economic shortcomings brought about by the spread of Covid-19 and economic disruptions resulting from the national lockdown. Productivity SA chairperson Professor Mthunzi Mdwaba... 

Retail industry lease engagement period extended by three months

By: Donna Slater     29th April 2020 As Covid-19 continues to slow the economy, with factories and retailers shut, the Grocery Retail Market Inquiry (GRMI) and the Department of Trade, Industry and Competition (DTIC) have agreed to extend the period for lease engagement and agreement-reaching thereof, in respect of all GRMI’s... 

WEF launches blockchain supply chain toolkit

By: Schalk Burger     29th April 2020 The World Economic Forum (WEF) has launched a comprehensive toolkit to accelerate the use of responsible blockchain by leaders to tackle supply chain failures exposed by the Covid-19 pandemic. Resilience of supply chains depends on transparency and integrity, which can be improved through the... 

Unctad calls for policies to ease trade, transport restrictions

By: Marleny Arnoldi     29th April 2020 Intergovernmental entity, the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (Unctad), has published a ten-point action plan to ease trade and transport constraints amid the Covid-19 pandemic and its aftermath. Unctad wants to help enable the free flow of goods, food and essential supplies.  

Global e-commerce trade up 8% in 2018

By: Simone Liedtke     28th April 2020 E-commerce sales reached $25.6-trillion globally in 2018, up 8% from 2017, according to the most recent available estimates released on April 28 by the United Nations' trade and development body, the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (Unctad), at the start of its eWeek event. The... 

BLSA suggests rethink of how to ease business into staged lockdown

By: Donna Slater     28th April 2020 Getting some previously shut sectors back into safe production is key to getting the economy moving again, as has been done with the phased easing of the lockdown, suggests business promotion agency Business Leadership South Africa (BLSA) CEO Busi Mavuso. However, she fears that it will prove... 

BLSA suggests rethink of how to ease business into staged lockdown
Photo by Creamer Media's Donna Slater
Busi Mavuso

Hudaco lists on A2X

By: Marleny Arnoldi     28th April 2020 JSE-listed engineering consumables supplier Hudaco has been approved for a secondary listing on A2X Markets and will start trading on May 5. A2X CEO Kevin Brady says Hudaco is a company with a remarkable 125-year history. “Such longevity is not easily achieved and its listing on A2X is... 

Manufacturing Circle extends application deadline for sector-wide Covid-19 campaign

By: Simone Liedtke     24th April 2020 The deadline for responses to the Manufacturing Circle’s sector-wide Covid-19 Protocols Readiness Assessment has been extended to April 26, at 10:00. The campaign was launched to solicit commitment and compliance in access control to operations, screening and temperature testing, as well as... 

Mandela Mining Precinct can play key role in navigating industry through Covid-19 crisis

By: Nadine James     24th April 2020 Times of crisis and chaos necessitate introspection, creativity and adaptation, and while the Covid-19 pandemic is a challenge that is unprecedented in recent human memory, it highlights how essential continual research, innovation and planning are for the sustainability of society. Challenging... 

Mandela Mining Precinct can play key role  in navigating industry through Covid-19 crisis

AfDB’s Adesina urges African cooperation to fight Covid-19

By: Donna Slater     22nd April 2020 An accelerated global health and economic effort is needed to overcome the Covid-19 pandemic in Africa, African Development Bank (AfDB) president Akinwumi Adesina said in a webinar this week. While Covid-19 infection rates are relatively low compared with the rest of the world, there is a... 

Conference aims to examine potential within Brics group for South African manufacturers

By: Rebecca Campbell     21st April 2020 The inaugural Brics Manufacturing Conference is scheduled is scheduled to take place in Johannesburg on May 21. Brics is the acronym for the Brazil Russia India China South Africa alignment, the political aspects of which are complemented by the Brics Business Council. And under the Business... 

East London port continues to facilitate movement of critical cargo

By: Simone Liedtke     20th April 2020 The Port of East London continues to facilitate the movement of critical cargo, related to the supply and distribution of essential goods (such as food, fuel and chemicals), during the Covid-19 pandemic and consequent lockdown in South Africa. Transnet National Ports Authority (TNPA) East London... 

East London port continues to facilitate movement of critical cargo
HSL Parity in foreground with wheat vessel Jorita

NCC files matter with National Consumer Tribunal

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     17th April 2020 The National Consumer Commission (NCC) has filed a matter against a company with the Consumer Tribunal (NCT) for prosecution. The NCC had received complaints of alleged unfair, unreasonable, unjust or unconscionable price increase against the company, whose name has not been revealed, on March 26... 

Franchise sector appeals to government for urgent intervention

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     17th April 2020 Since the implementation of the Covid-19 emergency measures, about 94% of the franchise industry in South Africa has not been trading, with the exception of mostly food retailers. This has had a devastating impact on the industry, industry body the Franchise Association of South Africa (Fasa) says. 

Online portal to boost access to essential medical Covid-19 supplies

By: Donna Slater     17th April 2020 As part of the Business South Africa (BSA) initiative, and with technical assistance from Tencent South Africa, the South African Medical Technology Industry Association (Samed) has created a live online portal for its member companies to upload details of the Covid-19 supplies and equipment they... 

Impact of SA’s Covid-19 shutdown on platinum uncertain as supply slumps with demand

By: Natasha Odendaal     17th April 2020 South Africa’s platinum mines have been idled for the past three weeks as the country rides out a national lockdown to curb an anticipated surge in Covid-19 cases across the country. However, while mining majors have indicated confidence that they will be in a position to recover, they will... 

Impact of SA’s Covid-19 shutdown on platinum uncertain as supply slumps with demand

Covid-19, economic climate lead to unpromising trade conditions – Sacci

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     15th April 2020 The Covid-19 pandemic and recessionary economic conditions have negatively impacted on the business climate and resulted in further trade condition uncertainty, the South African Chamber of Commerce and Industry (Sacci) says. Moreover, the organisation indicates that the State of Disaster... 

Bidcorp says Covid-19 impact only evident from April onwards

By: Simone Liedtke     14th April 2020 JSE-listed Bid Corporation (Bidcorp) successfully exited its UK logistics activities – Bestfood Contract Distribution and PCL – at the beginning of March, as expected. In a market update on April 14, Bidcorp said trading for the nine months to March 31, on a like-for-like basis, had held up... 

Skills vital to develop local suppliers for automotive industry

By: Schalk Burger     10th April 2020 Skills are a critical requirement to sustainably allow for the establishment and development of local black suppliers to the automotive industry. Most of the suitable entrepreneur candidates to establish and run local component manufacturing and supply operations will come from the automotive... 

Skills vital to develop local suppliers for automotive industry
INDUSTRIAL SKILLS Economically feasibility will determine which components can be produced locally and the pace of deeper localisation

Policies can assist OEMs with Africa’s automotive market

By: Khutso Maphatsoe     10th April 2020 Africa needs to have policies and incentives in place to help original-equipment manufacturers (OEMs), such as German automotive manufacturer Volkswagen (VW), gain access to the automotive market in Africa, says Deloitte Africa automotive industry leader Martyn Davies. Polices include the... 

Policies can assist OEMs with Africa’s automotive market
WINNING FORMULA With South Africa’s automotive market being well established, foreign OEMs have chosen to increase their manufacturing capacity in the country

WTO warns of plummeting global trade 

By: Marleny Arnoldi     9th April 2020 World trade is likely to fall by between 13% and 32% this year as the Covid-19 pandemic disrupts economic activity and life around the world, the World Trade Organisation (WTO) reports. The global body believes the slump in trade will be even worse than what was brought on by the global... 

SAA Cargo steps up as trade facilitator

By: Marleny Arnoldi     8th April 2020 The cargo division of South African Airways (SAA) on April 6, for the first time, operated a passenger aircraft to transport cargo. This was in response to the increased demand for cargo flights to distribute critical and essential goods during the national lockdown.  

Research reveals gap in Covid-19 funding for businesses in townships

By: Donna Slater     7th April 2020 The Covid-19 pandemic and the current lockdown are already having a devastating impact on South Africa’s economy, with informal and small businesses in townships likely to feel the brunt of the impact.   A study by postgraduate students at the University of Cape Town (UCT) and entrepreneurs from... 

Chemicals industry likely to face longer-than-expected downturn, says ICIS

By: Donna Slater     7th April 2020 The Independent Commodity Intelligence Service (ICIS) has warned the international chemical sector to prepare for an extended downturn along with lower-for-longer oil prices, both of which will have big implications for profitability and investments. ICIS demand forecasting lead analyst Rhian... 

Deadline for public transport, automotive guideline public comment extended

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     6th April 2020 As a result of the measures implemented in South Africa to curb the spread of Covid-19, the Competition Commission has extended the closing date for public comments into the draft Market Inquiry into the Land-based Public Passenger Transport report to June 30. Submissions had been due to close on... 

Research group reports that South Africa has ample food supplies

By: Rebecca Campbell     3rd April 2020 South Africans should not be concerned about the availability of food during the current Covid-19 pandemic. This assurance has been given by the Bureau for Food and Agricultural Policy (BFAP), a Pretoria/Tshwane-based nonprofit organisation (created in 2004 to carry out scientifically rigorous... 

Food security identified as great Covid-19 concern in Southern Africa

By: Simone Liedtke     2nd April 2020 Food security has been identified as one of the biggest concerns in Southern Africa amid the Covid-19 outbreak and ensuing lockdowns in countries across the continent. In a webinar on April 2, the World Health Organisation (WHO) and the World Food Programme (WFP) said that, as most countries have... 

Food security identified as great Covid-19 concern in Southern Africa

AfDB, Moz government ink deal to pave road crucial to trade

By: Donna Slater     1st April 2020 The government of Mozambique and development finance institution, the African Development Bank (AfDB). have signed a protocol agreement for a $34-million grant for the paving of the 35 km Nambungali-Roma road, in Mozambique, to facilitate trade and promote social inclusion of local communities.... 

AfDB, Moz government ink deal to pave road crucial to trade

Covid-19 has hit China-Africa trade and investment, but impact should be short-term

By: Rebecca Campbell     30th March 2020 The Covid-19 pandemic has hit African trade with China and was likely to reduce Chinese investment in the continent, the Economist Corporate Network and Baker McKenzie and Silk Road Associates pointed out in their report BRI Beyond 2020. The BRI was the Belt and Road Initiative, which was China’s... 

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

Iata urges action to keep fragile global air transport sector functioning

By: Rebecca Campbell     27th March 2020 The global airline industry is extremely vulnerable to the economic effects of the Covid-19 virus, a recently released analysis by the International Air Transport Association (IATA) has shown. IATA Chief Economist Brian Pearce highlighted that, of all the airlines in the world, only some 30 were... 

Communication and planning needed to limit Covid-19 impact on supply chains

By: Schalk Burger     27th March 2020 The impact on supply chains owing to the Covid-19 outbreak and from the closure of ports of entry can be mitigated through identification of potential impacts and early communications among affected stakeholders, says advisory firm Deloitte Africa restructuring services leader Jo Mitchell-Marais.... 

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%

Mill closures, continued market decline a concern for growers

By: Mamaili Mamaila     27th March 2020 With two sugar mills closing down and being mothballed for the 2020/21 season, growers are concerned that the remaining 12 mills might potentially struggle to successfully complete this season’s harvest, says the South African Canegrowers’ Association (SA Canegrowers). 

Mill closures, continued market decline a concern for growers
THE NUMBERS GAME The South African cane-growing sector comprises 21 500 cane growers – of which 20 200 are small-scale growers, producing about 20% of the 19-million tons of cane a year
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