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Finweek - English

Finweek - English 10/22/2020

Finweek is South Africa’s leading financial weekly magazine focusing on investment. With its brisk, creative and authoritative analysis of business and investment issues, it’s an essential business tool in the daily battle for competitive advantage. Today's business decision-makers have to cope with increased pressure on their time and are expected, more than ever before, to succeed in the face of stiffer competition. Finweek provides relevant information in quick bytes, along with award-winning investment advice.

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South Africa
Media 24 Ltd
25 Issues

in this issue

2 min.
from the editor

as I wrote in my previous editor’s note, I was recently on KwaZulu-Natal’s South Coast. While there, I needed to visit a doctor. Having comprehensive medical cover, I didn’t need to think twice about being able to book an appointment with the local GP at his private practice. The consultation fee was steep and had to be paid in cash, but can be claimed back. The medicine I needed was billed straight to my medical aid. Within a couple of hours I was back at work, with everything I needed to get on the mend. The majority of South Africans do not have this privilege. At present, only about 15% of our population can afford private medical care through medical aid scheme membership (see p.31 of our cover story). And this cover…

5 min.
the power of a good reference

one of the many hidden tasks of an academic is to write reference letters. And lots of them. Almost all students need this for their first job application, and who better to write one than the professor who has read their work and witnessed their progress over the last few years? Do these letters make a difference? One school of thought takes the view that they provide little additional information to what a potential employer can already – and more objectively – glean from an academic record and CV. They are, at best, a reflection of the information already provided and can, at worst, only distort the very clear signal that something like an academic record provides. In some cases, reference letters may even expose the biases of the referees: such as…

3 min.
in brief

“THE BILL BRINGS CERTAINTY TO SOUTH AFRICANS AND INVESTORS BECAUSE ITCLEARLY OUTLINES HOW EXPROPRIATION CAN BE DONE.” —Minister of public works and infrastructure, Patricia de Lille, announced the submission of the Expropriation Bill, 2020 to parliament. If the bill, to replace the current Expropriation Act of 1975, passes, authorities would be required to negotiate with owners of land to try to reach an agreement on the acquisition of the property, before it can be seized. Land would be confiscated without reimbursement in certain cases if it is unused, abandoned or poses a safety risk, among other conditions. The bill was certified as constitutional by the chief state law adviser. “OBSTACLES TO A FASTER RECOVERY ARE ELECTRICITY SHORTAGES AND RECORD-HIGH GOVERNMENT DEBT LEVELS.” – The South African Reserve Bank stated in its bi-annual Monetary…

1 min.
double take

THE GOOD The United Nations World Food Program (WFP) was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for its efforts to combat hunger and prevent it being used as a weapon of war. The Nobel Committee said the WFP’s work toward providing food security can help to improve prospects for stability and peace, and noted how it has taken the lead in combining humanitarian work with peace efforts in South America, Africa and Asia. The WFP’s largest emergency response effort at present is in Yemen, where a nearly six-year war has caused a humanitarian catastrophe and left two-thirds of the population (about 20m people) food insecure. THE BAD Eskom CEO André de Ruyter said the risk of load shedding will not be eliminated but only reduced by September 2021. De Ruyter was speaking at the…

3 min.
navigating carbon concerns in mine production

the investment focus on how mining companies interact with society has sharpened profoundly in the last three years; now, controlling emissions is as important a metric to fund managers as production. However, two UK fund managers are asking whether the current formulation that measures emissions specifically, the scope 1 to 3 standard, is entirely appropriate. In fact, the environmental, social and governance (ESG) movement as it currently exists has prototypic faults, they say. “The way we’re doing ESG is we’re looking up every drain pipe in the company and trying to measure what’s coming out,” said Douglas Upton, an investment analyst and partner at Capital Group, a US fund manager with over $1tr under management. “But I feel like we’re measuring stuff that we can measure and not really stuff that’s important,” he…

4 min.
the northern cape holds key to unlock sa’s mineral riches

the lack of minerals exploration in South Africa’s mining sector goes back to its corporatisation more than 60 years ago, following the creation of Anglo American and its counterpart, General Mining. In those days, mining houses did their prospecting in-house, where the parent company charged service management fees to the underlying businesses, some of them listed. Apart from its inefficiency, it resulted in an investment tradition that applauded the mighty and gave short shrift to the two-bit entrepreneur; ironic, given the manner of Johannesburg’s own mining town origins. Errol Smart, a South African who has worked in the Australian minerals development sector, which has a varied, mixed bag of a minerals exploration sector, is convinced the time is ripe to change history. It would be apposite: President Cyril Ramaphosa’s economic recovery plan…