5 important things happening in South Africa today

 ·16 Feb 2024

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

  • SOEs massive bailouts: A Treasury presentation to parliament this week highlighted the woeful financial records of South Africa’s state-owned enterprises (SOEs) and their cost to taxpayers. In the past three years, the government has bailed out six ailing SOEs to the tune of R281 billion – not counting an additional R24 billion for the SA National Roads Agency. [Business Day]

  • PetroSA chair’s CEO bid foiled amid fraud allegations: The person who currently holds the position of chairperson at PetroSA was vying for the role of CEO; however, it has been ruled out from consideration due to an ongoing investigation by the Hawks. This is regarding a falsified court order and the chair’s inability to clear the security screening process. [News24]

  • Court victory for Intercape: The High Court in Makhanda has issued an order that requires the South African Police Service (SAPS) and the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation (DPCI) to comply with a list of requirements. The police have been instructed to investigate 165 cases of intimidation and violence against Intercape to enable the effective prosecution of each crime individually. [Moneyweb]

  • Divide over possible VAT hike: Tax experts are divided over the means by which the government plans to raise an additional R15 billion in revenue. Some say that increasing VAT would be the most economically efficient and least harmful way, while others say that it is unlikely, given the disproportionate effect it has on the less wealthy in the country. [BusinessTech]

  • Markets: The South African rand strengthened on Thursday as the dollar fell due to a mixed batch of U.S. economic data. On Friday (16 February), the rand was trading at R18.97 to the dollar, R23.81 to the pound, and R20.41 to the euro. Oil is trading at $82.74 a barrel. [Reuters]

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