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Southern Africa

S.African lobby group opposes parts of new draft mining charter

Gwede Mantashe during a media briefing in Johannesburg, South Africa, Wednesday, April 5, 2017. Photo:Themba Hadebe/AP/SIPAThe Minerals Council South Africa, an industry lobby group, said on Sunday it does not support some elements in the latest draft of an industry charter, including a stipulation that one percent of core profit is paid to communities and employees.


South African power supply hit by protests at Eskom plants

 Eskom's electricity pylons snake across a hill in a Johannesburg suburb, Thursday, Nov. 24. 2011. Photo: Denis Farrell/AP/SIPASouth Africa's cash-strapped state utility Eskom said some of its power stations were operating below full capacity on Wednesday, after union members blocked some staff from entering around 10 plants because of a wage dispute.


Interview: Rob Davies, Minister of trade and industry, South Africa

13062018SouthAfricaIndustrial policy is bearing fruit. The trade and industry minister speaks to The Africa Report about developing regional value chains and the importance of the state’s role in getting positive social and economic outcomes from the private sector


Angola's top diamond mine says underpricing has cost it almost $500 mln

 Angola's President Joao Lourenco, center, arrives for a round table event at an EU Africa summit in Abidjan, Ivory Coast on Nov. 29, 2017. Photo: Geert Vanden Wijngaert/AP/SIPAAngola's Catoca, the world's fifth largest diamond mine, estimates it lost $464 million over the past six years due to a government-imposed marketing system that obliged it to sell production below international prices, a company presentation seen by Reuters showed.


South Africa's Vodacom to increase black ownership

A schoolboy walks beneath a mobile phone advertising billboard in Johannesburg Wednesday, Sept. 3, 2014. Photo: Denis Farrell/AP/SIPASouth Africa's Vodacom Group said on Monday it will increase the stake held by black shareholders by up to 6.25 percent in a 17.5 billion rand ($1.34 billion) black empowerment transaction.






Vodacom said current black shareholders in Vodacom South Africa and a newly formed staff scheme will exchange their current shareholding for a stake of between 5.8% and 6.25% in Vodacom Group.

The new YeboYethu empowerment structure would acquire a 6.25% shareholding in Vodacom Group based on an illustrative price of 152.50 rand per Vodacom Group share.

Under black economic empowerment rules, South African companies are encouraged to meet quotas on black ownership, employment and procurement as part of a drive to reverse decades of exclusion under apartheid.

Increase ownership to 20%

Meeting government rules on black ownership makes a company more likely to qualify for government tenders.

The existing scheme, that is due to unwind in October and will increase Vodacom Group’s black ownership to 20%, delivered a return of 7.5 billion rand ($575 million), the firm said.

"This amounts to 6.7 times the original capital that was invested into the deal in 2008 and therefore has been one of the most profitable and successful transactions concluded in South Africa," said Vodacom Group Chief Executive Shameel Joosub.

Petrochemicals and energy firm Sasol last year said it would cover costs and pay bank debt related to a share sale from its Inzalo black economic empowerment scheme after the share price slumped, leaving investors unable to fully repay their debts.

Companies in Africa's most advanced economy are required to help increase black ownership, often using vendor financing deals to sell shares to groups who were excluded before 1994 under apartheid's white minority rule.


Sibanye CEO says seismic events a fact of life for South Africa mines

Sibanye-Stillwater's Beatrix mine near Welkom, South Africa. Photo: AP/SIPAEarthquakes such as the one in which seven miners died last month in South Africa are impossible to predict and a fact of life for deep level operations there, the chief executive of the mine's owner Sibanye-Stillwater said on Thursday.


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