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  • Restructuring the Private Sector
    Date: 2017-02-28
    South Africa

    The unbundling and reconstitution of SA’s apartheid-era conglomerates since the early 1990s is arguably the biggest restructuring of the South African economy since the discovery of diamonds in the 1880s, but it has received only limited attention. Yet, as SA grapples with its fundamental challenges of unemployment, inequality and fracturing social cohesion, it is critical to reflect on how the bargains that gave rise to this restructuring were formed, their effect on economic structure and performance and the urgent need for a new set of pragmatic bargains. ...

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  • Scorecard Finds Fishing Firms Are Most Transparent
    Date: 2016-12-07
    South Africa

    In many traditional African cultures, talking loudly avoids creating suspicions of secrecy — a gesture that could be well adopted by South African business. Transparency in business was an early victim of the apartheid state, which attempted to hide clandestine sanctions-busting as well as arms and equipment supply to the state security apparatus. This culture of secrecy remains prevalent in large sections of business, and yet the reasons behind corporate secrecy are the same reasons society demands corporate transparency....

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  • JSE-listed directors still mainly pale males — majorities grossly under-represented
    Date: 2016-08-31
    South Africa

    Analysis of data by the independent research organisation Who Owns Whom reveals that active JSE-listed companies’ boards have directors who, on average, are relatively younger and who are serving in their current positions for a shorter time than their overseas counterparts. These directorships remain dominated by white men......

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  • Clarity About Investors Will Aid Graft War
    Date: 2016-03-07
    South Africa

    SOUTH African company law has historically favoured those wishing to obscure corporate ownership. The clandestine section 15A of the Companies Act of 1973 allowed apartheid ministers of trade and industry to disallow the disclosure of certain categories of subsidiaries published in the annual reports of JSE-listed companies in cases where such publication was deemed to be not in the "national interest"....

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  • South African Taxi Industry
    Date: 2014-10-01
    South Africa

    Taxi drivers are not the most popular people the world over, most certainly in South Africa. But there can be few more successful examples of creating order from chaos as that of the South African national Taxi Council (SANTACO) in its 13 years of existence....

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  • Waste Not Want Not
    Date: 2014-09-30
    South Africa

    On his seven hour journey in February this year from Moscow to the Russian town of Rybinsk on the Volga River Philip Malandrinos did not know if his headache was caused by the temperature of -16°C or the deafening noise made by the studded tyres of the aging Renault van on the iced road. Philip runs a medical waste incineration business in the Cape Town suburb of Delft and was on his way to inspect a Russian manufactured incinerator which uses a new clean burning technology based on the design of the jet engine. Medical waste is categorised as ‘dry waste’ and ‘wet waste’ and I will not elaborate on the latter other than to say that regulations governing the industry stipulate that the incinerated result has to be dumped at hermetically sealed sites. ...

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  • Aviation in the DRC (CA)
    Date: 2014-06-01
    Democratic Republic of Congo

    It was reported that Mobutu Seso Seko president of then Zaire chartered the Concorde to visit his dentist in Paris. He built a runway long enough to land the Concorde in the rain forests near his home town of Gbadolite on the border the Central African Republic in the far North of the country which remains one of Africa’s longest runways....

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  • The SA Corporate Scene 1980 to 2010
    Date: 2014-01-01
    South Africa

    2014 sees in 20 years of South African democracy, and the 34th edition of Who Owns Whom. An advantage of the printed book is that it provides an historical snapshot of South African business at the moment the pages roll off the press, so as a matter of curiosity I browsed the four editions that marked the end of the last four decades. ...

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