5 important things happening in South Africa today

 ·23 Feb 2024

Here’s what is happening in and affecting South Africa today:

  • Anglo American eyes R19 billion in annual cost savings: Anglo American’s 2023 profits plunged 94%, mainly due to weak platinum group metals and diamond sales. As such, the company will cut costs by R19 billion. Amplats and Kumba, its subsidiaries, will lay off employees in South Africa [News24]

  • Eskom chair says SA needs more private investment in power sector: Eskom’s chair, Mteto Nyati, stated that private sector investment is needed in South Africa’s power sector as Eskom deals with debt and constructs new infrastructure. However, Nyati is firm that Eskom will not be privatized. [BusinessDay]

  • Above-inflation blow for the wine industry: The wine industry is unhappy with the recent tax hike on its products. Wine and sparkling wine faced a 7.17% tax increase, while brandy has been hit with a 6.67% increase. The industry is already facing various challenges, such as illicit trade, a weak economy, a port crisis, and blackouts. [Daily Maverick]

  • Godongwana worries about Eskom 2.0: Finance Minister Enoch Godongwana was speaking to economists on Thursday, where he said that “one of the things we should not do in dealing with the Transnet issue is not repeat the Eskom template… It’s a bad template – we put money into Eskom right through, hoping that by fixing Eskom, we are fixing the electricity problem.” [EWN]

  • Markets: The rand weakened quickly on Thursday, reversing all its gains and more from the previous day’s budget speech. On Friday (23 February), the rand was trading at R19.15 to the dollar, R24.27 to the pound, and R20.75 to the euro. Oil is trading at $83.32 a barrel. [Reuters]
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