Archive for November 23rd, 2007

source: Mmegi

It has taken five long years for the concept of the Opal Decor showroom at Commerce Park in Gaborone to be realised.

Launched last week, the showroom boasts handmade Botswana furnishings mainly for export to overseas markets.

Director Ouma Rammidi says her main goal is to sell outside Botswana, and then to tourists, foreign conference delegates and local customers.

Her furnishings are custom-made for people who know and understand elegance, hence some of the items cannot be duplicated, she points out.

Rammidi says the idea came to her five years ago when she [continue reading]


22 November 2007

Following on three years of growth, commercial WiFi hotspots now face a dim future in South Africa, at least among corporate workers, with a new study by technology research firm World Wide Worx showing a steady move toward the use of more affordable 3G technologies.

Mobility 2007, World Wide Worx’s latest annual study of mobile technology, released in Johannesburg on Tuesday, shows that the corporate use of WiFi – small networks that allow wireless access to the internet – has fallen back after a steady rise, while the use of 3G – wireless broadband provided by the mobile networks – has rocketed.

“We have been warning for several years that commercial WiFi hotspots, especially in hotels and conference centres, are in danger of pricing themselves out of the market,” said World Wide Worx MD Arthur Goldstuck. “And, now that a monthly subscription to a basic 3G service is cheaper than a few hours on most commercial hotspots, the chickens have come home to roost.”

The study found that the [continue reading]

sourge: Mmegi

Botswana has been urged to refocus its energy on microeconomics in a bid to shore up the declining rate of industrialisation in the country.

At a breakfast panel discussion organised by the Department of Industrial Affairs at Fairground Holding’s Pavilion Hall in Gaborone on Tuesday, experts raised concerns about the country’s focus on larger components of the economy.

“We have done everything in our power for macro-economic policies and received accolades but ignored micro-economic variables,” said Monnane Monnane, a Research Fellow with the Botswana Institute of Development Policy Analysis (BIDPA).

“We are not doing enough in terms of micro-economic variables.”

For example, said Monnane, Botswana has received praise for its management of interest rates, which has [continue reading]

source: The Financial Gazette
Rangarirai Mberi and Kumbirai Mafunda Staff Report

ZIMBABWE’S controversial draft law compelling foreign owned mining enterprises to cede 25 percent of their shares to the government will scare away existing and potential investors, mining executives and economic analysts said this week.

President Robert Mugabe’s government on Monday published a draft legislation that would require virtually all foreign-owned mining companies to transfer majority shareholdings to local owners as well as surrendering a 25 percent stake to the government at no cost.

But the Zimbabwe Chamber of Mines this week reacted angrily to the proposed draft bill warning the move would be disastrous to the ailing and delicate sector as it would drive away foreign direct investment into the capital intensive sector.
“We have made our position known clearly to the government. We don’t agree with the position they have taken. We want a situation that encourages production,” said Murehwa.

Murehwa, the chief operating officer at platinum miner Zimplats, which is controlled by South Africa’s Impala Platinum Mines, said the government’s move to force foreign enterprises to surrender half their shares to locals and to the government for free would kill off any new investment.
“It is unlikely that there will be new mines. Chances of new investors coming on [continue reading]

source: IOL

November 23 2007 at 12:26AM

More than 40 000 police officers will be deployed during the 2010 Soccer World Cup, a senior police official said in Durban on Thursday.

Deputy police commissioner Andre Pruis told a media briefing in Durban that 31 000 police officers and 10 000 police reservists would be deployed specifically for the tournament.

By the time the World Cup kicked off, South Africa would have a 195 000-strong police force.

Boosting security would be the purchase of eight new police helicopters, giving the force a total of 46 helicopters for the tournament.

The purchase is part of the R655-million budget for new equipment.

Pruis said all equipment would be ready for use by end of February 2009, ahead of [continue reading]

source: allAfrica
Southern African News Features (Harare)

22 November 2007
Posted to the web 22 November 2007

Tigere Chagutah

Zimbabwe has launched the first commercial biodiesel processing plant in southern Africa, underlining the region’s resolve to move to cleaner and renewable sources of energy.

This comes amid concerns about the impact of fossil fuels (coal, petroleum and natural gas) on global warming as well as depletion of the world’s petroleum reserves.

The biodiesel processing plant, which can produce biodiesel from any vegetable oil-bearing seed, has a capacity to produce between 90-100 million litres of diesel annually making it the largest of its kind in sub-Saharan Africa.

At full capacity the plant will meet 10 percent of Zimbabwe’s annual diesel requirements, which translates to foreign currency savings of US$80 million annually.

Zimbabwe, like most countries in southern Africa, is largely dependent on imported petroleum fuels to power its industrial production and transport systems.

The recurrence of petroleum supply bottlenecks in [continue reading]

source: allAfrica
Business Day (Johannesburg)

22 November 2007
Posted to the web 22 November 2007

Renée Bonorchis

MONETARY policy is too restrictive and the market is already in some difficulties, says Nedbank chief economist Dennis Dykes.

He was speaking at the Gordon Institute of Business on Tuesday night, about what to expect from the economy next year.

“Interest rates will be high in the first half of next year. There is a strong chance of an increase next month, a gainst our advice,” Dykes said.

“By the second half of the year the economy should have slowed and the central bank will [continue reading]