Friday 23 June 2017
(RFI(EN) 06/19/17)
A court in South Africa this week announced that there would have to be a trial to decide who actually owns a shipment of phosphate from Western Sahara that's been stopped and held in a South African port. Western Sahara's Polisario Front movement stopped the ship last month (May) with a legal complaint, saying the phosphate had been taken from land that Morocco occupies illegally. Read at more: http://en.rfi.fr/africa/20170617-south-africa-trial-decide-fate-western-...
(AFP (eng) 06/15/17)
South Africa adopted a new mining code on Thursday requiring companies to have majority black investors to qualify for new prospecting licences, causing the major miners' stock to tumble. The controversial Mining Charter forces firms seeking mining prospecting rights to have a minimum of 50 percent plus one share owned by black investors while requiring firms with existing mines to have 30 percent black ownership -- up from 26 percent. Companies will have one year to achieve the new 30 percent target. By midday, South African-focussed miners Sibanye Gold shares had shed six percent, platinum giant Anglo American had lost five percent while Kumba Iron Ore also dipped five percent. The country's mining minister Mosebenzi Zwane said the long-awaited regulations...
(AFP (eng) 06/13/17)
Credit ratings agency Moody's on Tuesday said it had downgraded a slew of top South African banks, insurers and local authorities prompted by fears over the country's worsening financial position. It slashed the creditworthiness of the five largest banks -- FirstRand, Standard, Nedbank, Investec and Absa -- to just one notch above junk status, all with a negative outlook. "The primary driver for today's rating downgrades is the challenging operating environment in South Africa, characterized by a pronounced economic slowdown, and weakening institutional strength," Moody's said in a statement.
(APA 06/13/17)
The South African and Lesotho governments have agreed on the equitable sharing of contracts to be awarded during the construction of the Lesotho Highlands Water Project (LHWP). Speaking at the Lesotho Highlands Development Authority (LHDA) briefing sessions held at the Wanderers Club in Johannesburg on Monday, Water and Sanitation Deputy Director-General Lindiwe Lusenga emphasised on the equal participation of the Lesotho and South African contractors. Lusenga said the LHWP was committed to enhance the use of Black entrepreneurs, individual experts and smaller companies. She encouraged smaller and bigger entities to join forces with one another to form a competent and financially efficient...
(Reuters (Eng) 06/12/17)
Sibanye Gold's (SGLJ.J) $1 billion rights issue, aimed at raising capital to help fund its acquisition of U.S. platinum producer Stillwater, was oversubscribed by almost five-fold, the company said on Monday. Such capital raising efforts are comparatively rare at the moment in South Africa's troubled mining sector, which is beset by a range of challenges including policy uncertainty and labor and social unrest. But Sibanye, which has built a reputation on its dividend flow, is diversifying away from its home base with its Stillwater acquisition, reducing its exposure to the risks associated with doing business in South Africa. Those risks are...
(AFP (eng) 06/12/17)
German Chancellor Angela Merkel will on Monday meet African leaders in Berlin on initiatives aiming to reduce the poverty and conflict driving a mass migrant influx to Europe. The idea is to team up African nations willing to reform with private investors who would bring business and jobs to a continent where instability or graft often scare off foreign companies. Merkel is hosting the initiative as part of Germany's presidency of the Group of 20 powerful economies, whose leaders meet in the northern port of Hamburg a month later. Invited to Berlin are Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi and the leaders of Ghana, Ivory Coast...
(AFP (eng) 06/10/17)
Credit ratings agency Moody's on Friday said it had downgraded South Africa a notch over gloomy growth prospects and the political instability unleashed by corruption scandals engulfing President Jacob Zuma. Africa's most advanced economy was knocked down from Baa2 to Baa3 -- one notch above junk status -- with a negative outlook, Moody's said in a statement. Fitch and Standard and Poor's, the other two main global ratings agencies, already downgraded South Africa to junk status after Zuma's shock purge of critical ministers in March, including respected finance minister Pravin Gordhan. The decision outraged the opposition
(Bloomberg 06/08/17)
South Africa named Dondo Mogajane as the director-general in the National Treasury, appointing an official from within the department’s ranks two months after President Jacob Zuma replaced a respected finance minister and his deputy. Mogajane, who has been acting in the position since May 16 after Lungisa Fuzile left, will take up the position immediately, Communications Minister Ayanda Dlodlo told reporters in Cape Town Thursday after a cabinet meeting. Fuzile’s resignation sparked concern that all three top finance positions would...
(Financial Times 06/07/17)
South Africa plunged into its second recession in eight years in the first three months of the year, even before a political crisis in the ruling African National Congress triggered rating cuts to junk status. On an annualised basis Africa's most industrialised economy contracted 0.7 per cent in the first quarter after a 0.3 per cent drop at the end of 2016, Statistics South Africa said on Tuesday. The announcement confounded most economists' expectations for growth of about 1 per...
(Bloomberg 06/07/17)
South Africa’s economy fell into a recession for the first time since 2009 after it contracted for a second straight quarter in the first three months of the year as all bar two industries shrank. Gross domestic product receded an annualized 0.7 percent in the first quarter from a contraction of 0.3 percent in the previous three months, Statistics South Africa said in a report released on Tuesday in the capital, Pretoria. The median of 19 economists’ estimates in a...
(Reuters (Eng) 06/07/17)
South Africa has entered recession for the first time in eight years, data showed on Tuesday, piling pressure on a government facing corruption allegations and credit downgrades. Data from Statistics South Africa showed the first quarter contraction was led by weak manufacturing and trade, suggesting high unemployment and stagnant wages were dragging down South Africa's long-resilient consumer sector, analysts said. Political instability, high unemployment and credit ratings downgrades have dented business and consumer confidence in South Africa and the rand...
(Daily Maverick 06/07/17)
There are many things that are offensive about the conduct of the Gupta family. Their sense of entitlement to South Africa’s resources and disdain for the country’s people are perhaps most infuriating. The deluge of information being released into the public domain about their dodgy business practices and manipulation of political leaders and government officials might create a sense of powerlessness among ordinary citizens. But there should never be hopeless acceptance of the Guptas’ corrupt and immoral practices. Neither should...
(AFP (eng) 06/06/17)
South Africa's economy contracted in the first quarter of this year, pushing the continent's largest economy into its first recession since 2009, the official statistics agency reported Tuesday. "The South African economy moved into recession with the reported decrease of 0.7 percent in GDP (gross domestic product) during the first quarter of 2017, following a 0.3 percent contraction in the fourth quarter of 2016," said Stats SA. The biggest contributor to the negative GDP growth were the trade, catering and...
(Bloomberg 06/06/17)
South Africa’s economy fell into a recession for the first time since 2009 after it contracted for a second straight quarter in the first three months of the year. Gross domestic product shrank an annualized 0.7 percent in the first quarter from a contraction of 0.3 percent in the previous three months, Statistics South Africa said in a report released on Tuesday in the capital, Pretoria. The median of 19 economists’ estimates in a Bloomberg survey was for 1 percent expansion. One economist forecast the contraction. While rains are helping Africa’s most-industrialized economy recover from a 2015 drought that was the worst since
(Myjoyonline 06/06/17)
Trade from Ghana to South Africa is currently pegged at around $7.4 million – a significant drop from three to four years ago when it was quoted in the billions. Both countries are now seeking to close the gap and forge closer trade ties. “We need to go back and understand why suddenly there has been a significant drop,” said the Chief Executive of the Ghana Investment Promotion Center, Yoofi Grant. Mr Grant was part of a 31-member business delegation...
(Reuters (Eng) 06/06/17)
South African information technology firm Datatec Ltd (DTCJ.J) said on Tuesday it will sell its Westcon-Comstor Americas business to Synnex Corp (SNX.N) for up to $800 million, sending its shares up 25 percent. Westcon-Comstor, a distributor of technology and services for network security and data centers mostly in the United States, accounts for more than a third of Datatec's sales and a quarter of profit. "The transaction provides a unique opportunity for Datatec to partner with a leading distribution business...
(Financial Times 06/06/17)
The South African economy has officially entered recession, after a much worse than expected first quarter saw economic output contract by 0.7 per cent, in contrast to expectations of decent growth. The rand weakened immediately after the news, and was off 1.16 per cent against the dollar at publication time. South Africa had already been struggling to address sluggish growth even before recent political upheaval – namely the surprise sacking of its respected finance minister – rocked the country’s financial...
(Reuters (Eng) 06/06/17)
South Africa's Deputy Finance Minister Sfiso Buthelezi said on Tuesday he was dismayed by a media report alleging he improperly benefited from tenders during his time as chairman of the state-owned rail services company. Allegations of government corruption have escalated this week after local media began reporting on more than 100,000 leaked emails they say show inappropriate interference in the issuing of lucrative tenders. "The Deputy Minister would like to once again reiterate and place it on the record that...
(Financial Times 06/02/17)
South Africa’s government has avoided a second damaging credit rating cut from Fitch, but the ratings agency warned that the recent political upheaval is likely to further weaken the economy. Fitch cut South Africa’s foreign- and local-currency credit ratings to junk status in an unscheduled update in April after the ousting of finance minister Pravin Gordhan. In its regular ratings decision announced today, the agency confirmed the government’s BB+ rating with a stable outlook, suggesting further downgrades are unlikely in the short-term. Fitch said “South Africa’s ratings are weighed down by low trend GDP growth, sizeable contingent liabilities and deteriorating governance”, and said the cabinet reshuffle “is likely to undermine governance
(Eye Witness News 06/02/17)
Fitch says it is unlikely that government will raise its expenditure ceilings, which has served as anchor for fiscal policy. Ratings agency Fitch has affirmed South Africa’s rating at 'BB+' with a stable outlook. It says South Africa's ratings are weighed down by low trend in Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth and deteriorating governance. The agency and S&P global downgraded the country to junk status earlier this year. Fitch has cited in-fighting within the ANC, saying it "remains particularly strong"...

Pages