Archive for May 3rd, 2010

source: Mmegi
MBONGENI MGUNI
Staff Writer

Botswana is among select Sub-Saharan economies expected to expand by more than five percent this year and beyond on the back of rapidly normalising commodity prices and global trade.

The April report of the International Monetary Fund’s World Economic Outlook released last week predicts that Botswana’s economy will expand by 6.3 percent this year and by 5.1 percent in 2011/12. This is compared to the government’s expectations of a five percent economic growth in 2010/11.

Part of this strong recovery, the IMF says, is due to Botswana’s policy decision to spend its way through last year’s recession, also known as countercyclical fiscal policy.Instead of providing stimulus packages to affected sectors, Botswana opted to maintain, and in some cases ramp up, spending throughout the recession as a way of supporting the economy. As a result, the country ran a deficit of P13.5 billion for 2009/10, partly financed by a P6.6 billion African Development Bank loan and a [continue reading]

source: BOPA
03 May, 2010

GABORONE – About 24 Chinese construction companies are currently engaged in major government projects at an estimated total cost of P20 billion, Infrastructure Science and Technology Minister, Mr Johnnie Swartz has revealed.

Giving a key note address at the consultative meeting between his ministry and Chinese contractors on project implementation challenges, last Thursday, Mr Swartz said he chose to engage Chinese contractors alone, because they formed the majority of contractors in government construction projects.

According to Mr Swartz, the countrys construction industry had experienced bottlenecks associated with inadequate skilled manpower, poor workmanship and cost overruns.

Above all, he said the construction industry reputation also continued to be tarnished by small groups of unscrupulous operators and rogue traders through unprofessional practices.

Therefore, the purpose of the meeting was to award Chinese contractors an opportunity to voice their side of [continue reading]

source: Mmegi
GREG KELEBONYE
Staff Writer

What happened to Botswana Television’s news item about Gomolemo Motswaledi’s resignation from the ruling Botswana Democratic Party (BDP)?

The BTV news crew was very conspicuous with lights and cameras amidst the 200 or so people that sat and stood at a press conference called by the new Botswana Movement for Democracy at which Gomolemo Motswaledi announced that he was quitting the Botswana Democratic Party.

Conspicuous with their lights and cameras was also the state-owned Botswana Press Agency. While all the other media houses that attended published or aired the story about Motswaledi and Barata-Phathi, Botswana Television is yet to air its piece. Most likely, the story will not see the light of day.

Briefly, it has been spiked, in journalese. It is this ad hoc banning of select news items that should reach the viewer that makes BTV content mediocre. No, it is not that the reporters and [continue reading]

source: allAfrica
BuaNews (Tshwane)
1 May 2010

Pretoria — Operations at Durban’s new airport, King Shaka International, got off to a smooth start with the first flight taking off five minutes ahead of schedule this morning said Airports Company South Africa (ACSA).

ACSA spokesperson, Colin Naidoo, said while the first day was busy, all was under control.

“Operations are going absolutely very smooth and we are very excited the number of people that are here you would think you are in a shopping mall,” Naidoo said.

He said transition from the old Durban International airport also went very well with no major challenges reported.

South African Airways (SAA) marked the opening of the new airport, situated north of Durban, with a special test flight from [continue reading]

source: Mmegi
MBONGENI MGUNI
Staff Writer

The Botswana Power Corporation’s (BPC) precarious operational position will soon be fortified by a P454 million cash injection by its sole shareholder, the Government of Botswana, Business Week has learnt.

The bailout is part of a rescue package for BPC which also includes the recently announced 30 percent electricity tariff hike. The cash-strapped utility reportedly required a 55-percent hike, but with consumers in mind, Government opted to minimise the hike and complement it with the P454 million cash injection.

The bailout is timely as the BPC, weighed down by ballooning costs of imported power, maintenance and generation, has recorded its second net loss in as many years. In addition, the BPC annually incurs the costs of [continue reading]

source: BOPA
03 May, 2010

SEROWE – Disciplinary action will continue to be taken against public officers who fail to perform their duties, says President Lt Gen. Seretse Khama Ian Khama.

He said there is a causal relationship between failing to perform and alcohol abuse.

Speaking at a series of kgotla meetings in Serowe South last Thursday, President Khama urged civil servants to perform at a high level in order to make life easier for the public.

He said there is no point for the government to keep on initiating good development programmes when civil servants fail to [continue reading]

source: allAfrica
Business Day (Johannesburg)
Co-Operation Talks
Hopewell Radebe
3 May 2010

Johannesburg — SA’s relations with Japan took a new turn last week when the two countries agreed to start negotiations on future co-operation on friendly nuclear energy that could be SA’s answer to alternative power generation and the reduction of carbon emissions.

There was no time frame for signing an agreement, Kazuo Kodama, a spokesman for Japanese Foreign Minister Katsuya Okada, said on Friday at the 10th SA-Japan Partnership Forum meeting in Pretoria. But Okada and SA’s Minister for International Relations and Co-operation Maite Nkoana-Mashabane regarded the matter as urgent, Kodama said.

The visit last week of Okada, a member of the Democratic Party that took power last year, ending the post-war domination of the Liberal Democrat s, marked the centenary of [continue reading]