Archive for February 24th, 2009

source: Mmegi
Monkagedi Gaotlhobogwe
Staff Writer

Contrary to fears Finance Minister, Baledzi Gaolathe raised in this year’s budget speech, diamonds did well in the world market in 2008.

Although DTC Botswana sold 29 million carats over the year, parent company, the De Beers Group announced on Friday that the sales have gone up, beating 2007 sales by one per cent. De Beers’s 2008 sales surpassed the 2007 sales mark despite a challenging year marked by a drastic drop in demands for diamonds. During the budget speech, Gaolathe painted a pessimistic picture saying that diamond sales revenue is expected to decline by about 50 percent as prices are estimated to decrease by 15 percent, while production is expected to reduce by 35 percent.

But De Beers is optimistic that the future is bright despite the global financial crisis.

Gareth Penny, De Beers CEO, said in a statement on Friday that [continue reading]

source: BBC News

Debswana, a diamond producing firm jointly owned by Botswana’s government and De Beers, will close two mines for the rest of the year as demand falls.

Debswana’s four diamond mines will close on 25 February, but two of them will resume work on 14 April.

Its Damtshaa mine and Opara No. 2 Plants will be closed till the end of 2009, directly affecting 580 employees.

These workers will be redeployed within the company or offered voluntary early retirement and other incentives.

“These actions are being taken to mitigate the effects of the global downturn by reducing production during 2009 to align with [continue reading]

source: Mmegi
Monkagedi Gaotlhobogwe
Staff writer

The Minister for Finance and Development Planning, Baledzi Gaolathe told Parliament last week that the Botswana Stock Exchange(BSE) reacted rather late in mid-October last year to the world recession.

“While world markets started reacting to the financial crisi s around August and September 2008, the Botswana market reacted to the crisis rather late from mid-October 2008,” Gaolathe said.

The minister said when other markets were falling in response to the financial crisis, the Domestic Company Index (DCI) was on an upward trend, appreciating by 18.5 per cent while the Foreign Company Index (FCI) declined marginally, by 1.4 percent at the same time.

Gaolathe said both the DCI and FCI started declining marginally during the fourth quarter, October-December, 2008. However the finance minister said the extent to [continue reading]

source: Standay Standard
by Sunday Standard Reporter
22.02.2009 3:49:15 P

Grim faces and empty trolleys on supermarket isles have become a sign of the times as rising food prices hit Batswana where it hurts most – in their pockets.

A recent survey by Afrobarometer has revealed that although most Batswana rate government’s management of the economy highly, they are unhappy with the rising food prices, unemployment, poverty and the gap between the rich and the poor.

“In general, Batswana see economic problems as the most pressing, starting with unemployment at the top of the list,” stated the 2008 Afrobarometer Survey report which was released on Friday.

“The respondents perceive government as having failed to tackle job creation effectively, with 67 percent indicating that government has fared very badly or fairly badly.

“When the 2008 survey results are compared with [continue reading]

source: Mmegi
Fraser Mpofu

HARARE: Zimbabwe’s biggest chicken producer, Irvin’s Day Old Chicks, is now selling chicks in Botswana as well as Mozambique in an effort to circumvent foreign currency shortages and rising feed prices.

David Irvin, the chicken producer’s managing director, says the operating environment in Zimbabwe needs companies to be innovative by developing export markets, hence the move into Botswana and Mozambique.

“This is a new project that we have undertaken. We are not supplying day old chicks to Botswana and Mozambique. We feel these markets will help us generate foreign currency and restore the company’s viability,” says Irvin.

The strategic move by Irvin’s comes a few months after high stock feed prices forced other Zimbabwean poultry producers to resort to importing the input from either Botswana or South Africa.

Irvin said the company requires at least 50,000 tonnes of [continue reading]