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Trade News

South Africa losing R250m a day because of illicit trade – BLSA 

By: Simone Liedtke     10th March 2020 Illicit trade is one of the biggest contributors to the strain that South Africa’s fiscus is currently experiencing, as the country is losing about R250-million a day in tax revenue as a direct result of illicit trade. Illicit trade is defined as the production, import, export, purchase, sale or... 

Report shows Covid-19 could knock $4bn from Africa’s commodity revenues

By: African News Agency      10th March 2020 A new report has warned that sub-Saharan African economies could be badly affected by the novel coronavirus (Covid-19). The Overseas Development Institute (ODI) on Monday said the virus could impact sub-Saharan Africa by as much as $4-billion in export revenue.   

Globalisation faces a bend-but-won’t-break crisis on coronavirus

By: Bloomberg     6th March 2020 Globalisation is going through its biggest stress test since the 2008 global financial crisis and its aftermath. But if you want to understand why the forces of economic integration may be more resilient than many think, consider the centerpiece of a fancy new kitchen. When executives from... 

Online purchasing first for South Africa

By: Tracy Hancock     6th March 2020 US construction machinery manufacturer Caterpillar’s mini excavators will be one of the first Cat product lines to be sold online through its Southern Africa dealer, Barloworld Equipment, this year. Following the launch last year, there is growing excitement around the Cat Next Generation mini... 

Online purchasing first for South Africa
SOUTH AFRICAN INFLUENCE Air conditioning has also been introduced as an option on all Cat Next Generation mini excavator model sizes in response to direct feedback from South African customers

Post-Brexit UK exports could fall drastically, warns Unctad 

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     28th February 2020 A new study by intergovernmental body, the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (Unctad), on the impact of Brexit on UK exports, has found that the UK is at risk of losing up to 14% of its exports to the European Union (EU) in a “no-deal” Brexit. Nontariff measures (NTMs) could... 

South Africa could lose out on tariffs under Africa trade deal

By: Bloomberg     28th February 2020 South Africa risks forfeiting tariffs on about R70-billion worth of trade when a continent-wide free-trade agreement kicks in, according to the country’s tax commissioner. The first trade under the African Continental Free Trade Area, which could cover a market of 1.2-billion people with a... 

South Africa could lose out on tariffs under Africa trade deal
Photo by Creamer Media's Donna Slater
Edward Kieswetter

Pratley in push to increase export sales

By: Schalk Burger     28th February 2020 Electrical terminations specialist company Pratley is having a range of its products recertified, and new products certified in countries to which it exports as part of its drive to grow its exports and diversify the range of products sold in these markets, says Pratley CEO Kim Pratley. Expanding... 

Pratley in push to increase export sales
PERFORMANCE FOCUS The company is having its new products certified, and aims to grow exports

Sector in dire need of transformation

By: Mamaili Mamaila     28th February 2020 The manufacturing industry, and particularly the metals and engineering sector, is in much need of transformation, says national employer federation the Steel and Engineering Industries Federation of Southern Africa (Seifsa). 

Sector in dire need  of transformation
MICHELLE NORRIS Women working in the metals and engineering sector are predominantly found in administrative job functions

Stainless steel growth unlikely in 2020

By: Mamaili Mamaila     28th February 2020 The level of activity in the local stainless steel sector’s value chain has dwindled in the past decade, mainly owing to international competition, low steel prices and the slow growth of the local economy. 

Stainless steel growth unlikely in 2020
FULL OF VIGOR Stainless steel is one of the youngest industrial materials globally, managing to positively change people’s lives

Retailer to reduce single-use plastic impact

28th February 2020 Retail company Pick n Pay is moving to dramatically reduce the impact of single-use plastic and packaging by 2025. Since 2018, the retailer has successfully implemented a number of initiatives to reduce packaging and single-use plastic at its stores and throughout its supply chain. 

Volatile steel prices to continue in 2020

By: Mamaili Mamaila     28th February 2020 The volatile prices of domestic steel producers and domestic steel merchants are likely to continue in 2020, says national employer federation Steel and Engineering Industries Federation of Southern Africa (Seifsa) chief economist Dr Michael Ade. 

Volatile steel prices  to continue in 2020
MICHAEL ADE 2020 is still going to be a difficult year for the metals and engineering sector, with ongoing pressure on margins

Stakeholders must ensure resource-backed loans are transparent, says NRGI

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     27th February 2020 Resource-backed loans have contributed to crippling debt levels in Africa and are shrouded in secrecy, a new report has found. These loans to governments, collateralised with oil or minerals, have been hidden from scrutiny for far too long and that must change, say the report’s authors. 

CEO assures stakeholders JSE is ‘not resting on its laurels’

By: Simone Liedtke     25th February 2020 Self-regulatory multi-asset-class stock exchange, the JSE, had experienced a difficult operating environment, which CEO Dr Leila Fourie on Tuesday said had impacted on its performance for the year ended December 31. Despite the constrained operating environment, the JSE was “not resting on its... 

CEO assures stakeholders JSE is ‘not resting on its laurels’
Photo by Creamer Media's Simone Liedtke
JSE CEO Dr Leila Fourie

Adam Boehler named executive chairperson of Prosper Africa

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     21st February 2020 US Development Finance Corporation (DFC) CEO Adam Boehler has been selected by US President Donald Trump to serve as executive chairperson of Prosper Africa, a US government-led initiative that aims to substantially increase two-way trade and investment between the US and Africa. He will lead... 

PwC unpacks the extent to which coronavirus may dampen the local economy

By: Marleny Arnoldi     20th February 2020 In light of the coronavirus impacting downstream on South Africa’s trade with China and causing business disruptions, professional services firm PwC has published a report on the potential impact of trade disruptions on South Africa’s sectors. The interconnectedness and complexity of global... 

PwC unpacks the extent to which coronavirus may dampen the local economy

Poultry association looking forward to tariff confirmation soon

By: Simone Liedtke     17th February 2020 The South African Poultry Association (Sapa) has welcomed President Cyril Ramaphosa’s announcement during his State of the Nation Address (SoNA) last week that the new tariffs on imported chicken to curb the unfair component of international trade, will be set within two weeks. Sapa GM Izaak... 

Slump in global goods trade to deepen with coronavirus, WTO says

By: Bloomberg     17th February 2020 Global trade in goods will likely stay weak in coming months as disruptions from coronavirus in China staunch the movement of international commerce already slowed by tariffs and uncertainty, according to the World Trade Organization (WTO). The Geneva-based body’s latest forward-looking Goods... 

US–Kenya trade talks seen a risk for Africa regional pact

By: Bloomberg     17th February 2020 A possible US-Kenya free-trade agreement could undermine an existing continent-wide commerce pact and limit Africa’s power to negotiate with the US. Washington announced on February 7 that it intended to start trade negotiations with Kenya. President Donald Trump’s administration doesn’t favor... 

Post-EU Britain seeks to promote and defend global free trade

By: Rebecca Campbell     14th February 2020 UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson has proclaimed that, now that his country has left the European Union (EU), it will campaign for global free trade. He did so in a speech early this month at the National Maritime Museum, at Greenwich, east of London.  

Renewed call to ban disposable cylinders

By: Darren Parker     14th February 2020 Despite various heating, ventilation, air-conditioning and refrigeration (HVAC-R) industry participants contesting the banning of disposable gas cylinders in South Africa for years, there is no indication of a decision on the matter being reached. South African Refrigeration and Air-Conditioning... 

Renewed call to ban disposable cylinders
TIME TO SCRAP THIS PRACTICE Disposed cylinders create about 3 150 m3 scrap metal and can explode if not thoroughly evacuated

KfW, DBSA renew MoU

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     13th February 2020 German development bank KfW has renewed its memorandum of understanding (MoU) with development finance institution, the Development Bank of Southern Africa (DBSA), to continue their successful collaboration on the financing and implementation of programmes. The signing of the MoU took place on... 

Trade conditions remain tight, says Sacci

By: Simone Liedtke     13th February 2020 Trade conditions remained tight in January, with 57% of the respondents to the South African Chamber of Commerce and Industry’s (Sacci’s) Trade Conditions Survey having experienced negative conditions. Fifty-four per cent of the respondents also expect conditions to remain depressed in the next... 

Seifsa, Busa welcome Mene’s appointment as AfCFTA secretary-general

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     12th February 2020 Wamkele Mene has been elected as first secretary-general of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA). Mene – who was South Africa’s chief negotiator in the AfCFTA and a former diplomat at the World Trade Organisation – will be inaugurated along with other members of the AfCFTA secretariat... 

South Africa, Zimbabwe to operate one-stop border post in 2024

By: Bloomberg     12th February 2020 A one-stop border post that will fast-track trade between South Africa and Zimbabwe will be fully operational at Beitbridge in 2024, according to South African Home Affairs Minister Aaron Motsoaledi. The crossing is one of Africa’s busiest land borders, with about 25,000 people and 500 trucks... 

Patel asked to brief lawmakers on government’s response to ongoing steel job cuts 

By: Terence Creamer     11th February 2020 The opposition Democratic Alliance has written a letter to Trade and Industry Minister Ebrahim Patel calling on him to brief lawmakers about developments at steel group ArcelorMittal South Africa, which recently warned of additional job cuts at the company. AMSA confirmed on February 6 that,... 

Patel asked to brief lawmakers on government’s response to ongoing steel job cuts

US revokes WTO subsidy preferences for some developing nations

By: Bloomberg     11th February 2020 The Trump administration is changing a key exemption to America’s trade-remedy laws to make it easier to penalize about two dozen so-called developing countries including China, India and South Africa. The US on Monday narrowed its internal list of developing and least-developed countries in... 

US revokes WTO subsidy preferences for some developing nations

Air freight: African sector does well, but rest of world performs poorly

By: Rebecca Campbell     6th February 2020 The African air freight sector bucked the global trend last year, the International Air Transport Association (IATA) has reported. While, globally, air freight was down for the year, in Africa it showed a strong rise. Measured in freight-(metric) ton-kilometres, global air cargo demand declined... 

Air freight: African sector does well, but rest of world performs poorly
Photo by Bloomberg
Cargo being loaded on to a freighter aircraft

Brexit does not pose immediate threat to South Africa

By: Marleny Arnoldi     31st January 2020 Although the implementation of Brexit from Friday evening marks a historic fork in the road in economic relations between the UK and the European Union (EU), not much will change for South Africa in the immediate future, says North West University (NWU) Business School Professor Raymond Parsons.... 

UK displays optimism about Africa’s future at summit

By: Rebecca Campbell     31st January 2020 January 20 saw the UK-Africa Investment Summit in London, attended by representatives of 21 African countries, including the Presidents of Egypt, Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria, Rwanda and Uganda. That South African President Cyril Ramaphosa chose to pull out of the conference to focus on the country’s... 

Indaba to shape Africa energy policies

By: Mc'Kyla Nortje     31st January 2020 The Africa Energy Indaba conference provides a yearly programme that shapes energy policies for the continent. The conference will take place this year from March 3 to 4 at the Sandton Convention Centre, in Johannesburg. 

Indaba to shape Africa energy policies
LIZ HART The Africa Energy Indaba 2020 will shed light on what is required of municipalities

Prowling lions, corrupt officials block roads to Africa trade

By: Bloomberg     30th January 2020 Nyoni Nsukuzimbi drives his 40 t Freightliner for just over half a day from Johannesburg to the Beitbridge border post with Zimbabwe. At the frontier town – little more than a gas station and a KFC – he sits in a line for two to three days, in temperatures reaching 104F, waiting for his documents... 

Predictability, resilient funding critical for business growth

By: Simone Liedtke     29th January 2020 Having a sense of predictability and a resilient line of funding available is critical for businesses in South Africa to grow, particularly as currency volatility and ageing debtors’ books present key challenges, says financial services company Investec for Business corporate accounts head Dr... 

Predictability, resilient funding critical for business growth
Investec for Business corporate accounts head Dr Greg Cline

South Africa will caution Trump against ‘premature’ trade review

By: Bloomberg     29th January 2020 South Africa’s government will tell President Donald Trump’s administration that its review of a preferential trade agreement that could put as much as $2.4-billion in exports at risk is premature and potentially damaging for both economies. The US Trade Representative will start public hearings... 

South Africa will caution Trump against ‘premature’ trade review

Global sights set for export association

By: Mamaili Mamaila     24th January 2020 Steel industry association the Steel Tube Export Association of South Africa (Steasa) and some of its members will participate at the national pavilion at the International Wire and Tube Trade Fair 2020. 

Global sights set for export association
SOARING HIGHER Exports of high-carbon and low-alloy steel tubes and pipes remain on an upward trajectory and are resilient amid export competitiveness challenges

Recovery of global economic growth remains sluggish, despite stabilising 

By: Simone Liedtke     23rd January 2020 The recovery of global economic growth remains sluggish, even though it has stabilised, with the slowdown in the US and China expected to be more than offset by improvement in some of the large emerging markets, the UK and the Euro region, says integrated insurance solutions provider Alexander... 

Recovery of global economic growth remains sluggish, despite stabilising
Photo by Creamer Media's Donna Slater
(Left to Right) Lebo Thubisi, Isaah Mhlanga and Gyongyi King

As Brexit nears, UK's Johnson pushes for deeper trade ties with Africa

By: Reuters     20th January 2020 Prime Minister Boris Johnson will call for deeper investment ties between Britain and Africa at a summit for leaders of 21 African countries on Monday that comes days before his country will leave the European Union. After securing Britain's departure from the EU, the world's largest trading... 

As Brexit nears, UK's Johnson pushes for deeper trade ties with Africa
Photo by Bloomberg
UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson

Growing trade networks bode well for South Africa, Scotland

By: Marleny Arnoldi     15th January 2020 The Africa–Scotland Business Network (ASBN) has, since its launch in November, achieved great success in bringing trade opportunities to South Africa. Since the network’s launch in Cape Town during the Africa Oil and Gas Week, it has grown organically to a membership of 86 and counting.  

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