5 important things happening in South Africa today

 ·24 Nov 2023

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

  • Rand manipulation exaggeration: While the manipulation of the rand led to significant profits for the banks and companies involved, claims that they profited R1 trillion a day and impacted the long-term value of the currency are wildly overstated. TreasuryOne director and currency risk strategist Andre Cilliers said banks should not be exonerated of wrongdoing, but South Africans must be realistic about the rand manipulation’s impact. [Daily Investor]

  • Billions in potholes: The National Department of Transport (DoT) spent in excess of R3.65 billion over the last six months repairing the country’s crumbling roads. This is only roughly 29% of the total Provincial Roads Maintenance Grant of R12.7 billion. [TopAuto]

  • SARS forced to pay:  The high court in Pretoria has ruled that SARS must honour the last leg of a three-year wage deal signed with unions in 2019 and pay CPI plus 2% to its members. The ruling is a blow to SARS, as it argued it can’t afford it and is facing a funding shortfall of about R20 billion over the next three years. [Business Day]

  • Port crisis threatens clothing lines: Mr Price says port instability could affect the local clothing industry’s autumn lines if delays persist. There have been a host of problems at SA’s ports, in particular, Durban, with some 71,000 containers stuck outside that entry point earlier this week. SA retailers are increasingly looking to local manufacturing for clothing needs, but most fabric still comes from overseas. [News24]

  • Markets: The South African rand was stronger on Thursday after the central bank maintained its key interest rate amid high inflation. On Friday (24 November), the rand was trading at R18.82 to the dollar, R23.61 to the pound and R20.53 to the euro. Oil is trading at $81.34 a barrel. [Reuters]

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