Construction group reports on progress with MeerKAT radio telescope extension project

South African black-owned construction group Concor has reported on its progress in building the foundations and infrastructure for the MeerKAT extension project, which it is undertaking in conjunction with OptiPower. MeerKAT is South Africa’s world-leading radio telescope array (and also a precursor to the international Square Kilometre Array radio telescope programme), and the extension project involves the erection of 20 more dish antennas. The MeerKAT site is located in the Karoo region of the Northern Cape province, some 90 km from the town of Carnarvon. The construction company started work on the site in September. In addition to the foundations for the dishes, the project includes the construction of roads and other infrastructure.

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Musina ring road on track for 2022 completion

Minister in the Presidency Mondli Gungubele, together with the head of the Infrastructure Office in the Presidency Dr Kgosientsho Ramokgopa on November 22 held a working visit to the Musina local municipality to assess the progress being made with the construction of the Musina ring road. The construction of the new ring road from Musina South to Musina North started in December 2019 and will be completed in 2022. The road will divert traffic from the N1 in town by providing a bypass around town.

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Sasol aims to begin producing green hydrogen in Sasolburg from 2023

Energy and chemicals groups Sasol aims to begin producing 6 t/d of green hydrogen at its facility in Sasolburg by 2023, VP for climate change Shamini Harrington reports. In a presentation delivered during the Africa Green Hydrogen Forum, Harrington said that the green hydrogen would be produced using a combination of 60 MW of renewable electricity and existing assets, including existing electrolyser assets.

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Barloworld’s extensive restructuring pays dividends

Diversified group Barloworld is finally reaping the rewards of an extensive restructuring process. Announcing its financial results for the year ended September 30, the group saw operating profit from continuing operations improve by 119% year-on-year to R4.3-billion.

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African nations mend and make do as China tightens Belt and Road

Deep in Kenya’s Great Rift Valley, members of the National Youth Service tirelessly swing machetes to clear dense shrubs obscuring railway tracks more than a century old. It’s a distinctly low-tech phase for China’s Belt and Road drive in Africa to create the trade highways of the future.

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Eskom not holding up RMIPPPP projects, De Ruyter insists

Eskom CEO Andre de Ruyter has denied that the utility is delaying the introduction of new electricity capacity procured under the Risk Mitigation Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme (RMIPPPP), as suggested by Minerals Resources and Energy Minister Gwede Mantashe in a recent television interview. Speaking to Newzroom Afrika this week, Mantashe said that Eskom was “toing and froing” on the 11 RMIPPPP projects, including three powership projects, which was contributing to the delay in the introduction of 1 995 MW of new capacity.

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Sephaku continues to reduce burden on balance sheet, as demand holds firm

JSE-listed construction materials company Sephaku Holdings (SepHold) continued to meet its bank debt obligations during the interim period to September 30, reducing the burden on its balance sheet. The company plans to reduce this by a further R224-million by the end of its financial year on March 31, 2022, CEO Neil Crafford-Lazarus said in a release on November 18.

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South African Reits provide R3.5bn Covid-19 relief

Real estate investment trusts (Reits) provided R3-billion in relief support to tenants between April and December 2020, with 69% of this provided between April and August 2020, industry body the South African Reit Association (SA Reit) says. Reits issued a further R500-million in support between January and June this year, bringing the total relief comprising rental discounts and deferrals to R3.5-billion, the organisation’s ‘Rental Relief Report’ shows.

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Second phase of plant expansion begins  

Secondary steel manufacturer Veer Steel Mills has entered its second phase of expansion with the construction of a melt shop – the newest addition to its plant in Alrode, Alberton.

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LSFB creates faster, more economical construction

Developers, local authorities and housing associations are quickly embracing steel framing technology, such as light-steel-frame building (LSFB), says the International Zinc Association Africa Desk (IZA Africa Desk).

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