South Africa is to use the 2013 World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland to call for more investment in the country and to boost the continent’s infrastructural projects.
The annual gathering of the world’s political, economic and business leaders takes place against the backdrop of a sluggish global economic recovery. President Jacob Zuma, who leads the country’s delegation, arrived this morning and will use the platform to promote the country’s vision for 2030, the National Development Plan.
The gloomy weather over the Davos resort is perhaps a reminder of the current difficult global economic condition. Themed, ‘The Resilient Dynamism’, that is what top leaders hope to achieve as they put together their heads to get the global economy back on its feet.
As South Africa tackles its triple challenges of poverty, inequality and unemployment, it hopes to use the occasion to lure more investments into the country.
via SABC News.com – SA to call for more investment at Davos:Tuesday 22 January 2013.
The South African Institute of Professional Accountants (SAIPA) has signed a memorandum of understanding with the Council for the Association of National Accountants of Nigeria to facilitate cooperation and allow members to work in both countries, the institute announced last week.
The memorandum allows members of the one organisation to become members of the other, which will enable South African accountants to work in Nigeria and Nigerian accountants to practice in South Africa.
via SA, Nigeria sign accounting agreement – SouthAfrica.info.
President Jacob Zuma will lead a South African delegation to a special meeting of the Southern African Development Community‘s (SADC’s) security troika in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania on Thursday.
Zuma is attending the meeting in his capacity as chair of the SADC’s Organ on Politics, Defence and Security Cooperation.
He will be joined by Namibian President Hifikepunye Pohamba, Tanzanian President Jakaya Kikwete and Mozambique President Armando Guebuza, who together make up the organ.
High on Thursday’s agenda will be reports on recent political and security developments in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and Madagascar, as well as Zimbabwe’s elections.
South Africa’s Department of International Relations and Cooperation said the 15-nation SADC was still the primary vehicle for South Africa to promote regional development and integration within the southern African region.
“South Africa has a vested interest in seeing the regional political and security situation improve, which will create positive conditions for the improvement of the quality of life of South Africans and SADC citizens in general,” the department said in a statement on Wednesday.
Zuma will be accompanied by International Relations Minister Maite Nkoana-Mashabane, who is already in Dar es Salaam for a meeting of the ministers involved in the body.
via Zuma to lead SADC security meeting – SouthAfrica.info.
JOHANNESBURG – In an industry that turns over more than R7bn annually, spaza shop township micro-entrepreneurs have a potential which cannot be ignored. Emerging as micro-convenience stores during apartheid there are now an estimated 10 000 spaza-shops spread across South Africa according to the South African Cities Studies conference paper published in 2011.
The Absa SME Index indicates that business ownership is on the rise but a majority of businesses in South Africa, two thirds, employ only one person. On average spaza shops employ between one and four people. The potential for sustainable job creation is evident. However, spaza shops exist in the informal economy meaning they exist outside of the institutional and regulatory frameworks.
Spaza shops range from survivalist endeavours to complete mini-supermarkets. Christo Botes, executive director at Business Partners says that the challenge with survivalist entrepreneurs is that they have no vision and often do not have the skills or training to move their business to the next level.
This is the current challenge being faced by local spaza shop owners in townships who are being forced to close down or are bought out by foreign spaza shop owners. The different approach to business adopted by foreign spaza shop owners has allowed them to compete against local spaza shops.
via R7bn worth of untapped township potential – MyBusiness | Moneyweb.
The proverbial axe is falling on ‘business as usual’ as every industry in South Africa, from mining to manufacturing to retail, is cringing at the thought of rising energy tariffs and the impending implementation of a carbon tax.
Stemming the tide of rising tariffs
On the receiving end of tariff hikes, industry is dealing with three significant elements, namely the cost of electricity, uncertainty around sufficient electricity supply and carbon emission management. According to Shaun Nel, Project Director & Advisor, Energy Intensive Users Group of Southern Africa (EIUG), “the current request by Eskom to raise electricity prices by 16% per annum over 5 years will have a significantly negative impact not only on mining and industrial customers but small business, commercial and residential users too. These electricity prices are making South African industries uncompetitive in the global environment. These prices will reduce investment and decrease profitability which has an impact on employment.”
via www.esi-africa.com | How will South African industry deal with tariff hikes and carbon taxes?.
According to the World Bank‘s 2013 Doing Business Report, South Africa has been joint-ranked, along with Malaysia and the United Kingdom, as the easiest country in the world for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to access credit.
Gerrie van Biljon, executive director of Business Partners Limited, says that this will be the third year in a row that South Africa has achieved the ranking and that that it is a very encouraging sign for small business owners locally.
He says that there is however evidence that a lack of SME financing still exists, despite the reported easy credit access. “Access to finance remains the number one hindrance for SMEs, regardless of this high rating. This is most likely due to the fact that SMEs are unsure of how to apply for finance, or that they do not qualify for the type of financing that is available. It is therefore of utmost importance that SMEs understand the stringent credit conditions that need to be fulfilled to obtain financing.”
via Access to credit still easy in South Africa – World Bank report.
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