Kusile Power Station faces operational hurdles

Three of the Kusile Power Station units, operating at over 90% efficiency, will shut down in October 2024 for chimney repairs, following damage that has lowered output. The damage (caused by maintenance lapses) necessitates R600 million to address temporary fixes. Despite high performance, the station faces completion and operational challenges. Completion is overdue by 10 years, costs incurred exceed the allocated budget, unfinished infrastructure and inexperienced staff threaten the station’s full capacity and efficiency.

Newlyn Park Bayhead Rail Terminal

The Newlyn Park Bayhead Rail Terminal, a new addition to the Durban Port, represents a significant public-private partnership in South Africa that will see over 4,000 new jobs created. The project addresses Durban’s recent logistical challenges and aims to revitalize the port’s infrastructure, which has been criticized for inefficiency. President Ramaphosa emphasized its importance for economic growth and infrastructure improvement in South Africa.

Sanlam Acquires Controlling Stake in Indian Insurer Shriram Group

South African insurer and FSP Sanlam has acquired a controlling stake in Shriram General Insurance Company (SGIC) based in India. Sanlam this week announced that it will increase its effective shareholding in Shriram General Insurance Company (SGIC) from 40.25% to 50.99% and its stake in Shriram Life Insurance Company (SLIC) from 42.38% to 54.40%. This move, set for completion in the second quarter, is part of Sanlam’s strategy to expand its presence in India, a market with high growth potential and low insurance penetration. The deal involves reallocating capital from Sanlam’s share in Shriram Finance Limited (SFL), underscoring its focus on emerging markets.

Market Moves

The South African rand appreciated on Monday morning as foreign reserves rose, trading at R18.61 against the dollar. South Africa’s net foreign reserves increased to $57.51 billion in March. On the stock market front, both the Top 40 index and the broader all-share index showed a modest increase of 0.38% in early trading. Meanwhile, the yield on South Africa’s benchmark 2030 government bond rose slightly to 10.57%.

The week ahead

  • Today: Japan will release its Consumer Confidence Index.
  • Wednesday will see the United States publish its Consumer Price Index.
  • A range of data is due on Thursday: China is set to release both its Consumer Price Index and Producer Price Index, South Africa will announce figures for Gold and Mining Production, as well as Manufacturing Production, and the United States, will reveal its Producer Price Index.
  • The week concludes on Friday with China reporting on its Imports and Exports, while the United Kingdom will provide data on its Trade Balance, Industrial Production, and Manufacturing Production.
The week that was - April 8th - OIG