5 important things happening in South Africa today

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

  • Load shedding: Power utility Eskom says South Africans should anticipate more power cuts this week as the system can not handle the increase in electricity demand during peak hours. This follows stage 2 load shedding being implemented on Monday. According to Eskom’s spokesperson, units at the Hendrina and Kendal power stations returned to service. However, this is not enough to stave off the implementation of load shedding during the evening peak. [EWN]

  • Mining Indaba: The Minerals Council of South Africa says that coal, iron ore, and chrome companies missed out on roughly R35 billion last year from contracted volumes that couldn’t reach ports. The council stressed that the mining industry, the fiscus and the rail and port operator would forgo any benefit from commodity prices by not exporting minerals to South Africa’s full potential. South Africa currently accounts for close to 1% of global mining exploration and has been deemed one of the ten least attractive jurisdictions for mining investment. [Moneyweb]

  • ANC and Russian billionaires: Investigative journalism conglomerate amaBhungane has revealed that massive cashflows from a joint venture with a sanctioned Russian oligarch Viktor Vekselberg could have overwhelmingly shaped the ANC’s funding. Financial records show that a cash cow company for the ANC paid out R2.4 billion in 2020. The revealed investment may explain the ANC’s unwillingness to criticise Russia’s war on Ukraine. [amaBhungane]

  • Ramaphosa warning: During the closing address at the ANC’s provincial elective conference in East London, President Cyril Ramaphosa warned against purging political opponents while preaching for unity within the factional ANC. The President further urged the ANC leadership in the Eastern Cape to tackle poverty in the province. He said that job creation should be the focus of the ANC in the area as the province is one of the country’s poorest, with an unofficial unemployment rate exceeding 50%. [News24] [EWN]

  • Markets: The South African rand fell on Monday, as the US dollar climbed to a two-decade high and as struggling power utility Eskom resumed load-shedding. The outages mark a significant brake on economic growth, with a stronger dollar also making high-yielding but riskier assets like the rand less attractive to investors. The rand is currently trading at R16.11/$, R17.04/€ and R19.93/£. [Nasdaq]

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5 important things happening in South Africa today