Transnet sees slump in export coal volumes as ‘cyclical not structural’

State-owned logistics group Transnet reported a 6.5% fall, from 77-million tons to 72-million tons, in export coal volumes in 2018/19, but described the decline as cyclical rather than structural. The group attributed the slump to “operational challenges, derailments, community unrest, train cancellations as well as general low demand in the first quarter”.

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Transnet aims to secure settlements on ‘unlawful’ loco contracts by end of financial year

State-owned logistics company Transnet reported on Monday that settlement talks were under way with all four original-equipment manufacturers (OEMs) supplying it with 1 064 new diesel and electric locomotives under contracts that had since been deemed “irregular and unlawful” by the group. Under a R49-billion procurement programme concluded in 2015, General Electric and China North Rail (CNR) were awarded contracts to supply 233 and 232 diesel locomotives respectively, while China South Rail (CSR) and Bombardier Transportation had been contracted to supply 259 and 240 electricity locomotives respectively.

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Transnet reports dramatic rise in irregular expenditure to R49bn

State-owned freight logistics utility Transnet received yet another qualified audit for its 2018/19 financial year and also announced a dramatic rise in irregular expenditure to R49-billion, after locomotive contracts valued at R41.5-billion where added to the figure, which stood at R8-billion at the end of March 2018. Acting CEO Mohammed Mahomedy stressed, however, that all the locomotives contracts included in the irregular-expenditure amount had been concluded prior to 2015, while the vast majority of the additional irregular-expenditure reported had not occurred during the year under review.

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Billionaire Dangote plans big growth in African cement capacity

Aliko Dangote, the richest person in Africa, is looking to expand cement capacity on the continent by 29% to 62-million tons, entrenching his flagship company’s position as the the continent’s biggest producer of the construction material. The billionaire plans to add six-million tons in Nigeria next year, taking volume in Dangote Cement’s home market to 35-million tons, he said in interview on Bloomberg Television. The rest of the expansion is planned mainly in West Africa, including Niger and Côte d’Ivoire.

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Pilot solution could be ‘silver bullet’ to beetle threat

JSE-listed Emira Property Fund and newly formed Beetle Busters have successfully registered a “groundbreaking” treatment for the infestation of the polyphagous shot hole borer (PSHB), or Euwallacea fornicates, that has been killing trees in some areas of the country. The PSHB relies on fungus, known as Fusarium euwallaceae, to feed its adults and larvae, and it is this fungus that slowly kills the tree and not the bug itself.

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Kaytech remains only African producer of bidim

From the Durban Harbour quay wall, in KwaZulu-Natal, to the Glen Shopping Centre, in Gauteng, Durban-headquartered geosynthetics manufacturer and supplier Kaytech’s all-purpose geotextile bidim, is the first geotextile used in South Africa. Introduced by Kaytech in 1971, bidim was the first nonwoven geotextile ever made and the company remains the only manufacturer of the continuous filament, spunbond, needle-punched nonwoven geotextile in Africa.

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Abland to start Irene Link Phase 2 construction in Oct

Property developer Abland, and its partners on the Irene Link development, Giflo and SOM, will break ground on the second phase of the commercial development at the Irene Link precinct in Pretoria, in October. The 8 500 m² commercial building will be ready for occupation in October 2020.

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South Africa’s business rescue system ‘slowly maturing’, says Fasken partner

The South African business rescue system is “slowly maturing”, with an ever-growing understanding of the roles of different stakeholders, law firm Fasken partner Haroon Laheer tells Engineering News Online. Added to this is an understanding that, sometimes, the return to creditors on a cents-for-rand basis is not the “critical and most important criteria” in determining whether a business rescue is successful, he says.

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Upcycling initiative creates employment opportunities

Through research, innovation, skills development and corporate contribution, carbon tax training and consulting services expert 5inc is well placed to create jobs and skills development opportunities through projects based on waste collection and upcycling.

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Company introduces new boom lifts at local exhibition

Trusted equipment solutions company Goscor Access Solutions launched two brand new articulating boom lifts from manufacturer of mobile elevated work platforms Genie. The company launched the new Genie Z45/25 XC and hybrid Z60/37 FE at the African Construction Exhibition held at Gallagher Estate Convention Centre from June 11 to 13.

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