Archive from December, 2015
Dec 30, 2015 - Business Permit    No Comments

State mulls electronic fines payment system to curb graft

December 30, 2015 – News day
PLANS to curb corruption within the Zimbabwe Republic Police traffic section are underway with a system being developed to ensure people charged for road offences pay electronically.
This was said by Finance minister Patrick Chinamasa while addressing Senate last week during debate on the Finance Bill to do with the 2016 National Budget.
Chinamasa was responding to concerns by Bulawayo Metropolitan Senator Tholakele Khumalo over corruption at roadblocks.
Khumalo had claimed police who collected spot fines usually have two receipt books — one for themselves and the other, a bona-fide one.
“We are exploring how we can collect these fines electronically,” Chinamasa told Senate.
“I am aware that a project is being developed on a joint venture basis. It has not yet come to Cabinet, but it is intended that as people pay fines wherever the police roadblock is, the police will have an electronic device so that as fines are paid, we will know the real time it was paid, what has been paid, and thus should be able to account for it.”
He said if Cabinet approved the initiative, it would go a long way in addressing public concerns with respect to corruption among police officers at roadblocks.
The announcement by Chinamasa comes at a time after he increased traffic fines with effect from January 1, 2016.
Chinamasa announced in the 2016 National Budget an increase in traffic spot fines, where offences for proceeding against a red traffic light, overtaking over a solid white line, driving without a licence and foot brakes not working, would attract a fine of $100 up from $20.
Home Affairs secretary Melusi Matshiya expressed concern that if there was no proper electronic system to monitor how the fines were collected, it would fuel corruption.
“If you raise traffic fines up to $100, it raises serious concerns because if you leave it to the police officer on the ground, it can be manipulated. There is need for consultation on the issue with secretaries of respective departments before its implementation,” Matshiya told the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Defence, Home Affairs and Security Services when he appeared before it early this month.
Matshiya also told the committee that if funding was availed for the electronic monitoring system, it would go a long way in combating malpractices at roadblocks.
Chinamasa informed senators that he had ordered all revenue collection institutions, which are allowed retention, to open accounts with the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe by the end of January next year.
“This is to enhance our capacity to monitor what takes place with respect to these funds. If there is misbehaviour or any malpractices that are going on, we should be able to stamp them very early,” he said.

Dec 30, 2015 - Business Permit    No Comments

Home Affairs maintains tourism travel rules are no problem

28 Dec 2015 –
Home Affairs sees nothing wrong with the immigration rules and finds that travellers’ complaints are “baseless and inaccurate”.
The Department of Home Affairs has said reports of UK-based travellers experiencing problems entering South Africa because of immigration regulations were “baseless and inaccurate”.
In a statement the department said negative reports had emerged due to distortion of facts: “We wish to categorically state that these reports are baseless and inaccurate, stemming largely from exaggeration and distortion of facts. The same goes for claims regarding families coming to our country.
“More travellers from the UK are coming to our shores. Our data systems for recording arrivals and departures at ports of entry show a notable increase of 3% for UK travellers to SA between 01 November and 23 December 2015.
“A total of 82 772 UK travellers had arrived in this period, in 2015, compared to 79 998 for the same period in 2014. Also for children, we experienced an increase in the number of arrivals for the 01 November 2015 to 23 December 2015 period, with 8 745 arrivals recorded, compared to 8 508 in 01 November 2014 to 23 December 2014 – an increase of 3%.”
The department added that it was “consistent in discussions” of the 2014 immigration regulations. “We have indicated that [we] welcome tourists and others to our country as tourism stimulates economic activity, assisting SA in realising the aims of the National Development Plan.
“Home Affairs wants what is best for the country as can be seen in concessions announced by Cabinet in October 2015 that had been made to attract critical skills and foreign students. But we cannot be reckless in any policy formulation and implementation, thus the need consciously to balance economic goals with security interests.”
It added that officials “continue to do the best that they can” during the festive period. “Improving traveller processing at ports of entry for enhanced client satisfaction is among the apex priorities of the department.”

Dec 30, 2015 - Business Permit    No Comments

Spousal visa delay gets mother banned

29 December 2015 – Cape Times
A LOCAL father has blamed bureaucratic bungling by the Department of Home Affairs for his New Zealand-born wife being banned from entering South Africa for a year.
David Vollenhoven said after several years living overseas he had returned at the end of 2013 with his wife and their infant daughter to live permanently in Cape Town.
His wife Kelly was granted a two-year spousal visa in 2013 and she applied to renew it on July 31. The couple had also informed Home Affairs of their plans to holiday in New Zealand in December and that the issue of a spousal visa was urgent.
But they got no joy and with
their flights to New Zealand drawing closer, Vollenhoven hired an immigration attorney to assist with expediting his wife’s spousal visa application. The lawyer confirmed her two-year spousal visa had been approved and printed in Pretoria, but that it had not been dispatched to Visa Facilitation Services (VFS) in Cape Town.
“On November 25 I sought assistance via e-mail from one of the senior officials at Home Affairs. He replied on December 8 that the matter would be attended to and resolved within four working days (if not done so already). I replied that we fly out on December 11 and that four days would be too long. To date I have not received any further reply,” says Vollenhoven.
Now desperate, he went to the Home Affairs office in central Cape Town on December 11, and was promised the visa could be reprinted and dispatched to the Johannesburg office of VFS by midday on December 11.
The couple were shocked to find, despite promises, that immigration officials at OR Tambo had not flagged her. And when she and the children left for New Zealand, she was instead declared an “undesirable person” and banned from entering South Africa for a year.
While his immigration lawyer lodged an appeal with Home Affairs, Vollenhoven says the ban meant his wife could not return to Cape Town next week.
“We acted in good faith at all times. The decision is unconstitutional. There is a lack of accountability within the DHA and VFS and no support for South African citizens,” said Vollenhoven.
Home Affairs Department spokesperson Thabo Makgola referred enquiries to Home Affairs Minister Malusi Gigaba’s spokesperson, Mayihlome Tshwete, who did not respond to several calls and text messages.

Dec 30, 2015 - Business Permit    No Comments

Home affairs committee urges visitors to comply with immigration regulations

Home affairs committee urges visitors to comply with immigration regulations
29 December 2015 – EWN
JOHANNESBURG – The Portfolio Committee on Home Affairs says visitors to the country must comply with immigration regulations for the safety of South African citizens and also for their own.

The department has urged travellers to familiarise themselves with the regulations following a number of foreign tourists who have been rejected from entering the country.

Chairperson of the committee Lemias Mashile says while the rules have been relaxed to accommodate visitors they also offer security for those that wish to visit the country.

“It doesn’t help for us to relax the regulations because then the wrong people will get into the country… We don’t want that type of a situation.”

Dec 30, 2015 - Business Permit    No Comments

Super rich tourists love SA despite visa rules

Dec 29 2015 – Fin24
Cape Town – South Africa was the most popular African destination for the super-rich during the 12-month period to September 2015, with about 11 000 multi-millionaires visiting the country.
The term “multi-millionaires” refers to individuals with net assets of $10m (about R150m) or more.
According to a survey on millionaire tourism in Africa, released by New World Wealth, SA remained in the top spot among multi-millionaires despite new visa rules “that made it more difficult for visitors to go to South Africa”.
The most popular destinations within SA for these visitors included Cape Town, Johannesburg, Umhlanga, Franschhoek, Stellenbosch, the Kruger National Park (mainly around Sabi Sands) and the Garden Route (mainly around Knysna).
Africa received about 43 000 multi-millionaire visitors during the 12 months to September 2015. Major destinations for them outside SA included Mauritius, the Seychelles, Marrakech, Casablanca, Cairo, Nairobi, the Serengeti in Tanzania, Sharm el-Sheikh in Egypt, the Masai Mara in Kenya, Livingstone in Zambia and the Okavango Swamps in Botswana. Gorilla safaris in Uganda were also popular.
The second most popular African country for the super-rich to visit, according to the latest report, is Morocco with 4 000 such visitors, followed by Botswana (3 000), Kenya (3 000), the Seychelles (3 000), Tanzania (2 000), Egypt (2 000), Mauritius (2 000), Uganda (1 000), Zambia (1 000), Mozambique (1 000) and Nigeria (1 000).
The survey also determined the top 10 rated hotels in Africa (excluding lodges) for 2015. La Mamounia in Marrakech, Morocco, came out tops, followed by the 12 Apostles Hotel & Spa in Cape Town and the Royal Mansour, also in Marrakech. Other SA hotels among the top 10 include The Oyster Box in Umhlanga north of Durban (5th), the Lost City and Sun City (6th), the Cape Grace (8th) and the Beverley Hills Hotel (9th) also in Umhlanga.
Franschhoek features strongly among the top rated small boutique hotels (fewer than 30 rooms) in Africa, according to the survey. La Petite Dauphine is rated number 1, the Franschhoek Country House third and La Residence fifth. North Island on the Seychelles (2nd) and Cleopatra (4th) in the KwaZulu-Natal Midlands round off the top five in this category.
Sabi Sands is home to three of the top 10 rated safari lodges in Africa, according to the survey. The Savanna lodge is third, the Londolozi camp fifth and the Singita Ebony lodge eighth. The Ngorongoro Crater Lodge in Tanzania took the top spot and SA’s Ngala Tented Camp in Timbavati came second

Dec 30, 2015 - Business Permit    No Comments

INFOGRAPHIC: Where SA’s super-rich live

Mar 12 2015 – Fin24
Cape Town – Johannesburg is still home to the largest portion of South Africa’s multi-millionaires, according to the South Africa 2015 Wealth Report by New World Wealth.
Last year’s report also found that most “super-rich” lived in Johannesburg.
For the purposes of the study a millionaire (or high net worth individual) is an individual with wealth of $1m (about R12.3m) or more, while a multi-millionaire is an individual with wealth of at least $10m (about R120m).

New World Wealth provides information on the global wealth sector, with a special focus on Africa and the Middle East.
The report focuses on the performance of high net worth individuals between the end of 2007 – the peak before the global financial crisis – and the end of 2014. This was to determine how well they have performed through the crisis.
About 48% – or 990 – of South Africa’s 2 060 multi-millionaires live in Johannesburg, followed by Cape Town with an 18% share (380 multi-millionaires) and Durban (including Umhlanga, La Lucia, Zimbali and Mount Edgecombe) at 6%, or 120 multi-millionaires.
Pretoria achieved the fourth place with 5%, or 110, of SA’s multi-millionaires.
The rest of the multi-millionaires – 22% or 460 – live elsewhere in the country, like Knysna and Plettenberg Bay, Stellenbosch, Franschhoek and Hermanus.
What they do
Financial services form the main industry from which South African multi-millionaires have acquired their wealth. It is the primary source of wealth for 20% of local multi-millionaires. Other important industries for them include real estate and construction (16%), basic materials (14%) and diversified (12%).
Many of Johannesburg’s multi-millionaires are involved in financial services, basic materials and construction. Those in Cape Town are involved in industries like real estate, financial services, retail and tourism.
Major industries for multi-millionaires in Durban include pharmaceuticals (healthcare), construction and transport, while in Pretoria it includes basic materials, manufacturing and financial services.
Favourite suburbs
In Johannesburg Sandhurst is the favourite suburb for multi-millionaires, followed closely by Hyde Park and Bryanston. Houghton and Westcliff also make the list, but each with about half the number of multi-millionaires than the top three suburbs.
Most of the multi-millionaires in Cape Town can be found in Camps Bay, followed by Bishopscourt, Constantia and Tokai, Clifton, Bantry Bay, Fresnaye and Llandudno.
Estate living
For those multi-millionaires, who prefer living on security estates, Zimbali in KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) comes out tops, followed by Erinvale in Somerset West – each with about 20 multi-millionaire residents.
The Johannesburg security estates of Blair Atholl, Dainfern and Waterfall Equestrian Estate, the Cape estates of Silverhurst, Steenberg, Fancourt, Pezula and Pearl Valley as well as Silver Lakes in Pretoria and Mount Edgecombe in KZN complete the list. They have up to about ten multi-millionaire residents each.

Dec 30, 2015 - Business Permit    No Comments

SA is open for business’

28 December 2015 – Iol
Pretoria – South Africa remains a reliable investment destination which is open for business, writes trade and industry minister Rob Davies.
Much has been said about the flight of capital from South Africa in recent weeks, suggesting the country has become an investment pariah. This sentiment has been coupled with the decision by ratings agencies to downgrade South Africa’s investment status. We are cognisant of both the domestic and international factors that have contributed to concerns about the stability of South Africa’s economy.
As we conclude 2015, it would, however, be important to contextualise some of the successes we have had in building an investor friendly environment. Among others, we have finalised the new Protection of Investment Bill, which aims to balance the rights and obligations of investors and government while also preserving the right of government to regulate in the public interest. One of our most significant interventions has been the establishment of a One Stop Inter-Departmental Clearing House which will provide efficient support to investors to ensure that South Africa offers an investment friendly environment.
We are also implementing Incentives and support services for investors through our Special Economic Zones (SEZs) programme. As part of the suite of SEZs the six Industrial Development Zones (IDZs) established between 2002-2014, have attracted a total of 59 investors on site with an investment value of more than R10.7 billion.
This is important for the country’s growth and development agenda because research shows inward investment is the most reliable predictor of future economic growth and South Africa’s Gross Domestic Fixed Investment (GDFI) to Gross Domestic Product (GDP) currently stands at approximately 20 percent. This is benchmarked against the international norm where the fastest growing developing countries have Gross Domestic Fixed Investment (GDFI) to Gross Domestic Product (GDP) ratios of above 30 percent. The target in the National Development Plan for FDI inwards is also set against this international benchmark of 30 percent.
In as far as South Africa’s ability to attract investment goes, it bodes well for our country that despite a global trend which indicates declining FDI levels, we have been able to attract more than R140 billion in the 2013/14 financial year. This is almost double the amount of FDI in 2012. South Africa was also the recipient of $3.31 billion in FDI from January 2015 to July 2015 which also saw the creation of 5 037 jobs.
Our efforts to create an investor friendly environment are bearing fruit and we have deveIoped a robust investment pipeline over the past five years. We have converted a number of these projects into committed investments, culminating into launches this year. I would like to indicate a few areas where we are doing very well:
South Africa and the automotive sector
South Africa’s Automotive Production and Development Programme (APDP) is one of our most successful programmes which have attracted private-sector investment of more than R 25.7 billion over the last 5 years. In the past year, we have seen additional commitments by Mercedes – R 2.4 billion, General Motors – R 1 billion, Ford – R 3.6 billion, Metair Group – R 400 million, BMW – R 6 billion in manufacturing the X3 range in its Rosslyn plant; Goodyear R 670 million and VW – R 4.5 billion. Earlier this month, Beijing Automobile International Corporation, China’s fifth largest car manufacturer, announced an investment of R 11 billion in a completely knocked down vehicle manufacturing plant in South Africa.
These investments must be seen within the context of our national developmental agenda. In this regard, our automotive programme supports 56197 jobs and is expected to create 21 836 new jobs. In addition, this sector employs about 9 million people directly in producing vehicles and the automotive components that go into them. It is estimated that each direct automotive job supports at least another five indirect jobs, resulting in more than 50 million jobs globally linked to the automotive industry.
South Africa and manufacturing
South Africa is undertaking one of the largest rail investment programs. Through our designation and localisation policy we are scaling up private sector investment, building up local capacity and capability.
Multinationals have affirmed South Africa as a regional manufacturing hub investing in new plants, machinery, technology and upgrading existing plants. Unilever has invested R 4 billion in state of the art plants across the country which are blue prints for their future global production locations. These new investments also contribute to sustainable development, are energy efficient, water neutral and reduce the carbon footprint.
Similarly, other fast-moving consumer goods companies such as Nestle, Proctor and Gamble, Samsung, Hisense and Kimberley Clark have also invested in South Africa. The Hisense plant located in Atlantis in the Western Cape, now exports to Africa and is ranked as the second most productive plant outside of China for Hisense. Domestic companies, which are also gearing up for the African and Global markets such as Nampak, Mpact and Tiger Brands, have also expanded their production capacity and investment. These companies have retained and expanded their investment and have been supported through the 12 I Tax Allowance program.
To further encourage and build a competitive manufacturing sector, South Africa has introduced a Manufacturing Competitiveness Enhancement Programme (MCEP). Since its establishment, the MCEP has approved 1 153 projects with a projected investment value of R28 billion. The programme helped to sustain more than 200 000 jobs since its inception in agro-processing, metals, chemicals, plastic, electro technical, printing, pharmaceuticals and wood.
Total grants under this programme include:
• R 2.1 billion in the agro-processing sector with an investment value of R 8 billion and 100 000 jobs retained,
• R 990 million in the chemicals sector with an investment value of R 3.3 billion and 33 000 jobs retained,
• R 1.5 billion in the metals sector with an investment value of R 6.4 billion and 36 000 jobs retained,
• R 330 million the wood sector with an investment value of R 960 million
The Manufacturing Investment Programme (MIP) has also approved 2 314 projects, with projected investment of R 49 billion and 58 127 jobs created, and a total incentive value of R 6.8 billion
• 624 projects in agro-processing
• 578 and 509 in Metals and Chemicals subsectors, respectively
South Africa and the Clothing and Textiles Competitiveness Programme
South Africa’s Clothing and Textiles Competitiveness Programme (CTCP) has also yielded results.
Between the inception of the programme in 2010 and March 2015, over R 3 billion was approved to support investment in the sector. As a result 68 000 jobs were retained in the sector, 6 900 new jobs created and 22 new factories in leather and footwear sector opened. By maximising the efforts of government and the private sector, this sector has been successfully stabilised, is steadily regaining domestic market share and is beginning to grow exports.
In the leather and footwear segment, the DTI is partnering with the private sector to establish a National Footwear and Leather Cluster. This has already been directly responsible for the creation of approximately 2 000 sustainable jobs and a reduction of R 1.4 billion in the sectoral trade deficit.
South Africa and new economic sectors
South Africa is also becoming a frontier for new sectors of FDI such as the green economy, oil and gas, shipbuilding and the ocean economy amongst others. Our Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Programme (REIPP) has become world renown and a policy blueprint for other countries and has attracted R190 billion in investments in the four rounds of bids. The Global Climate Scope report 2015 ranks South Africa 4th from 55 countries for its attractiveness for investment in clean technology.
As the oceans economy gains momentum, we welcome new investment in oil and gas manufacturing and infrastructure. This investment further enhances and supports South Africa’s efforts in establishing Saldanha Bay IDZ as an oil and gas serving hub for the African continent.
The R900 million Burgan Fuel storage terminal in Cape Town was launched which is a partnership that has been established between Dutch terminal operator VTTI, Thebe Energy and Jicarro, a 100 percent black owned entity.
Hunting, a UK company, established a new R 300 million facility in Brackenfell in the Western Cape to supply the African Oil & Gas market.
South African BPS value proposition
South Africa’s Business Process Services (BPS) sector continues to maintain its status as a leading global outsourcing destination while moving up the value chain in terms of service offerings.
Highlights for the sector include being nominated as “Offshoring Destination of the Year” at the National Outsourcing Association (NOA) awards in the UK and new investment from American Multinational EXL, CCI in Kwa Zulu Natal and Webhelp who are providing services to Vodaphone of the UK.
South African film production sector
South Africa is now globally recognised as a premier film production location. Disney’s The Jungle Book is due for release in April 2016. Top rated TV drama series Black Sails has been renewed for a third and fourth season.
In the Hospitality sector, Marriot Hotels earlier this year announced they would expand their national footprint and the Westcliff hotel, following investment from Singapore, was refurbished and rebranded as Four Seasons.
We are mindful of our challenges and goals set out in the NDP. We are committed to implement the 9 point plan for South Africa to achieve a higher level of inclusive growth.
As we conclude 2015, we are confident that South Africa continues to provide a reliable and attractive investment destination for multinationals who continue to use South Africa as a base for their regional and continental operations.
We have laid the platform for Regional Integration and Intra-Africa Trade and the roll out of the infrastructure program will serve as a catalyst to boost trade and investment on the continent.
Global economic conditions are affecting all countries and in an increasingly inter-connected world, no country is immune from its effects. What I am confident of is that South Africa remains an attractive investment destination that is open for business.