Wednesday, July sixteen, 2008.
From Creamer Media in Johannesburg, I'm Hilary Klopper.
Making headlines today:
Finance Minister Trevor Manuel has moved to strongly deny the persistent suggestion that he does not support South Africa's National Industrial Policy Framework, but he stressed on Tuesday that all government programmes had to be "costed and viable" before the National Treasury would agree to provide funding for their implementation.
Speaking at the release of the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development's economic assessment report for South Africa, which heavily criticised the Department of Trade and Industry's industrial policy vision, Manuel said it should not be forgotten that he was once Trade and Industry Minister, and that his "DNA" was all over some of South Africa's largest industrial-policy interventions.
US Trade Representative Susan Schwab urged sub-Saharan African countries on Tuesday to join the United States in pushing for a world trade deal that requires India, Brazil, China and other major developing countries to further open their markets.
A breakthrough next week in the long-running Doha round depends on how many new export opportunities that major developing nations provide for other countries, Schwab said at an annual meeting with sub-Saharan African countries.
Schwab and other top trade officials will be in Geneva next week in hopes of reaching breakthroughs on key tariff-cutting formulas and other elements of a deal that have long eluded negotiators in the nearly seven-year-old Doha round.
JSE-listed Harmony Gold said that 6 500 employees at its Virginia operations had halted work on Tuesday after two workers died at local mines, in the past five days.
Spokesperson Amelia Soares said that the action was not legal, and that hopefully workers would return on Wednesday.
Harmony said in a statement that a worker died at its Unisel mine, in the Free State, on Friday, and another at its Elandsrand operation, in the North-West, on Tuesday morning.
Also making headlines:
Manuel ‘regrets' not imposing windfall tax on synfuels industry
South Africa's decline as an exporter makes current account deficit a real threat
Union Buildings unveiled as State's energy-efficiency benchmark
Gold slips from a 4-month high, while platinum is down 2 percent
Uranium One is still looking to sell its remaining Aflease stake
And, Ontario is to protect its large northern forest area, and start a mining law review
In political news:
Condoleezza Rice urges African nations to act on Zimbabwe
China gets permission to import ivory from Africa
The United Nations warns that current Somali crisis could rival nineties famine
And, Libya urges the European Union to revise illegal immigration rules