Issue 125 | 25 July 2014
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PRESIDENT ZUMA LAUNCHES OPERATION PHAKISA
 
Through this initiative, the Malaysian Government was able to register impressive results within a short period.
 
 
On 19 July 2014, President Jacob Zuma launched the first phase of Operation Phakisa – an initiative aimed at fast-tracking the delivery of the priorities outlined in the National Development Plan (NDP).

President Zuma first announced Operation Phakisa during his reply to the State of the Nation Address debate in June.

The operation is modelled around the Government of Malaysia’s Big Fast Results methodology, which the country used to address its national key priority areas such as poverty, crime and unemployment.

It involves setting up clear targets and follows up with an ongoing monitoring process which makes the results public.

The NDP, also known as Vision 2030, is the country's 30-year framework for growing the economy while tackling unemployment, poverty and inequality.

The first implementation of Operation Phakisa will be led by the Department of Environmental Affairs and will focus on unlocking the economic potential of South Africa’s oceans.

According to The Presidency, the country’s oceans are estimated to have the potential to contribute up to R177 billion to gross domestic product (GDP) by 2033. In 2010, the oceans contributed approximately R54 billion to South Africa’s GDP and accounted for approximately 316 000 jobs.

Speaking at the launch of the initiative at the Inkosi Albert Luthuli International Convention Centre, in Durban, President Zuma said government chose the ocean economy with good reason.

“South Africa is uniquely bordered by the ocean on three sides – east, south and west. With the inclusion of Prince Edward and Marion Islands in the southern ocean, the coastline is approximately 3 924 km long,” he told the delegates. But despite this, the vast ocean space is relatively unexplored in terms of its economic potential.

To tap into the ocean, government has identified four priority sectors on which Operation Phakisa will focus. These are marine transport and manufacturing activities, such as coastal shipping, trans-shipment, boat building, repair and refurbishment; offshore oil and gas exploration; aquaculture and marine protection services; and ocean governance.

The second implementation of Operation Phakisa will be to pilot the health sector’s Ideal Clinic Initiative to improve service delivery in the country’s clinics nationwide, which will commence later in 2014. – Source: www.SAnews.gov.za
 
 
PRESIDENT ZUMA SENDS A MESSAGE OF CONDOLENCES FOLLOWING MH17 CRASH
 
 
The South African High Commission in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, was informed by Malaysia Airlines that none of the passengers on board Flight MH17 were travelling on a South African passport.
 
On behalf of the Government and the people of the Republic of South Africa, President Jacob Zuma has conveyed a message of condolences to the families, friends and colleagues of all the victims of the Malaysian Airlines plane that crashed in Ukraine on 17 July 2014.

The Boeing 777 flight, which was carrying a total of 295 people, including passengers and crew, was en route from Amsterdam to the Malaysian capital, Kuala Lampur, when it crashed in eastern Ukraine. 

President Zuma said: “We also extend our sympathies to the Government and the people of Malaysia, as well as all countries that have lost their citizens in the tragic crash. South Africa calls for a thorough, transparent and independent investigation to determine the cause of the incident.”
 
 
NELSON MANDELA FOUNDATION THANKS THE WORLD
 
Nelson Mandela International Day 2014 has been successful by any measure.
   
     
After the first Mandela Day in 2009, former President Mandela thanked all who had supported it. He said: “It is our hope that people will dedicate their time and effort to improve the conditions within their own communities. We thank you for participating in Mandela Day.”

Five years later, the Trustees and staff of the Nelson Mandela Foundation echoed his words in thanking all who came out in their numbers around the world in support of the first Mandela Day since Mandela’s passing.

“We value your commitment and your solidarity. And we trust that you will continue to work at improving conditions in your communities,” the foundation said.

The United Nations linked it’s My World Campaign to Mandela Day. Designed to secure participation by global citizens in the identifying of new development goals, it has already secured contributions from nearly three million people around the world.

Mandela Day activations were recorded in 126 countries. Over 1 200 actions were registered on the Mandela Day website and there are more to come. Nearly half a million food parcels were distributed to needy South Africans. Over a million sanitary towels were made available to South African schoolgirls.

“Drawing on volunteers from Australia, New Zealand, Northern Ireland, the United States and South Africa, Habitat for Humanity built another 67 houses for those in need. And we recorded over 15 000 books donated to school libraries on the day itself.”

“Let us demonstrate that the legacy of Nelson Mandela is a living one. Let us make Mr Mandela proud, every day.” – Source: www.SAnews.gov.za
 
 
 
CELEBRATING 20 YEARS OF FREEDOM IN ITALY
 
The inauguration of the mural formed part of a five-day celebration in Rome and Milan of South Africa’s 20 Years of Freedom and Democracy.
 
 
Giuliano Pisapia, the Mayor of Milan and the South African Consul-General Saul Kgomotso Molobi officially inaugurating the commemorative mural dedicated to Nelson Mandela
 
The South African Consul-General, Saul Kgomotso Molobi and the Mayor of Milan, Giuliano Pisapia, inaugurated a commemorative mural that celebrates the legacy of Nelson Mandela and 20 Years of Freedom and Democracy in South Africa on 17 July 2014.

The artwork at Fabbrica del Vapore was created by leading street artists Pao Pao, Nais, Orticanoodles and Ivan, and commissioned by the City of Milan with support from the South African Government and Building Energy, an independent renewable energy producer.

The artwork reflects a merging of different artistic styles which draws inspiration from South Africa’s democracy, where diverse people and cultures coexist.
 
 
Deputy Minister Bogopane-Zulu attends 2014 International AIDS Conference in Melbourne
 
The International AIDS Conference is the largest international meeting on HIV and AIDS, where every two years 25 000 participants representing all stakeholders in the global response to HIV meet to assess progress and identify future priorities.
 
 
The Deputy Minister of Social Development, Hendrietta Bogopane-Zulu, attended the 2014 International AIDS Conference in Melbourne, Australia, from 20 to 25 July 2014.

The conference with the theme “Stepping up the Pace” recognised that we were at a critical time and we needed to capture the optimism that had emerged and built on it to ensure that HIV remained on top of the global agenda. The pace needs to further increase to ultimately reverse the trajectory of the epidemic.
 
 
AUSTRALIAN G20 SHERPA VISITS SOUTH AFRICA
 
 
One of the reasons for Dr Smith’s visit was to consult with South Africa as a G20 member, on the proposed outcomes for the upcoming G20 Leaders’ Summit to be held in Brisbane, Australia, from 15 to 16 November 2014.
 
The Department of International Relations and Cooperation (DIRCO) hosted Australia’s G20 Sherpa, Dr Heather Smith, in Pretoria from 23 to 24 July 2014, where she met with her counterpart, South Africa’s G20 Sherpa, Ambassador Nozipho Mxakato-Diseko.

Dr Smith also delivered a keynote address on “The G20 and the Future of Global Economic Growth” on Thursday, 24 July 2014, organised by the University of South Africa, DIRCO, the Institute for Global Dialogue and the Australian High Commission.

Australia holds the rotating G20 Presidency for 2014. It has structured the G20 discussions during its Presidency around the themes of promoting stronger economic growth and employment, as well as making the global economy more resilient to deal with future shocks. Australia has also indicated that it intends to increase its outreach activities and engage with non-G20 members, particularly countries in Africa.

The G20 was formally established in September 1999 in the aftermath of the financial crisis of 1997-98. It comprises 19 member states and the European Union, which together represent around 90% of global gross domestic product, 80% of global trade and two-thirds of the world’s population. It brings together the world’s major advanced economies and developing countries and facilitates policy coordination to achieve global economic stability and promote long-term sustainable and inclusive growth.
 
 
SOUTH AFRICA LAUNCHES TWO BONDS IN INTERNATIONAL CAPITAL MARKETS
 
Both transactions were more than three times oversubscribed. The South African Government sees the success of the transaction as an expression of investor confidence in the country’s stable political environment, sound macro-economic policy framework and prudent fiscal management.
 
 
The Republic of South Africa successfully priced and concluded a US$1-billion 30-year and €500-million 12-year bond issuance in the international capital markets last week.

The dollar bond was priced at a coupon (interest rate) of 5,375%, which represents a spread of 220 basis points above the 30-year United States (US) Treasury’s benchmark bond.

The euro bond was priced at a coupon (interest rate) of 3,75%, which represents a spread of 225 basis points above the 12-year euro swap rate. The global investor base was primarily located in Europe and the US.

This issuance forms part of South Africa’s 2014/15 financing programme. A provision is made in the Budget Review 2014 for an amount of US$1,5 billion equivalent to be raised from the international capital markets to partially finance the Government’s foreign currency commitments.

While we are pleased with the confidence that the investors have shown in the sovereign, we are cognisant of our immediate challenges and can therefore not afford to be complacent as a country,” said Minister of Finance, Nhlanhla Nene.
 
 
SOUTH AFRICAN COMPANIES EXHIBIT IN ANGOLA
 
Minister Davies says the fair is a good platform to promote South African products and services within the Angolan market and will provide the South African companies with a platform to interact with private-sector leaders from Angola and the region at large.
   
   
 
The Department of Trade and Industry (the dti) is leading a 27-member delegation representing South African businesses to the Feira Internacional de Angola (FILDA) trade exhibition taking place in Luanda, Angola, from 22 to 27 July 2014.

The Minister of Trade and Industry, Rob Davies, says Angola remains a strategic partner for South Africa and it is imperative for South Africa to support companies to participate in the Angolan trade fair.

"Export sales resulting from the participation in the 2013 exhibition, as reported by South African companies amounted to more than R1,5 million. This year, we are optimistic that the companies will bring back more business leads that will help their businesses to prosper and contribute more to job creation," adds Minister Davies.

FILDA is a multisectoral fair with exhibitors from different sectors including oil, banking, services, trade, communications, automobile, machines and equipment, agriculture and farming products, among others.
 
 
MINISTER PANDOR ADDRESSES THE WORLD CONGRESS OF BASIC AND CLINICAL PHARMACOLOGY AND PHARMACOLOGY FOR AFRICA INITIATIVE
 
Delegates from close to 90 countries attended the event, including many from the African continent. 
 
 
The Minister of Science and Technology, Naledi Pandor, delivered the opening address at the Gala Dinner of the 17th World Congress of Basic and Clinical Pharmacology (WCP 2014) and Pharmacology for Africa Initiative at the Cape Town International Convention Centre on 16 July 2014.

Delegates included healthcare professionals, academics, researchers, educators and policy-makers from diverse arenas, including medical, pharmaceutical and other healthcare disciplines, pharmaceutical industry, governments and non-governmental organisations from around the globe.
 
 
SOUTH AFRICA SUPPORTS ANOTHER NASA SATELLITE LAUNCH
 
 
Minutes after the launch of the OCO-2 satellite from the Vandenberg Air Force Base in California on 2 July, the South African National Space Agency’s (Sansa) Hartebeesthoek ground station, west of Pretoria, picked up the rocket's signal and began providing live video feed to United Launch Alliance, the US company responsible for launching the satellite.  
 
South Africa successfully assisted with the launch of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration's Orbiting Carbon Observatory-2 (OCO-2) satellite on 2 July – the latest in a number of such launches South Africa has been involved in.  

"Our coverage included the second stage burn-2 and live video footage of the spacecraft separation," Sansa space operations manager Yunus Bhayat said in a statement. "Sansa's exclusive location and technical expertise put us in a position to monitor these key events, as they take place over African airspace."

Tiaan Strydom, international business manager at Sansa, said that Hartebeesthoek was the only station in the southern hemisphere with this type of capability, "and there is no room for error".

"The events that take place after launch are crucial to the housekeeping of satellites and to make sure that they are on track in terms of their specific flight trajectories and functionalities in space," Strydom said. "If these events are not monitored, they could be catastrophic."

Both the second-stage burn-2 and the live video streaming happened in a matter of 11 minutes. "The camera is located on the strut, looking forward at the spacecraft," Bhayat said, adding: "We employ multiple redundancies in the form of antennas and sub-systems to minimise the risk of failure."

According to Sansa, the OOCO-2 satellite is expected to provide insight into how the Earth adjusts to increased production of carbon dioxide, working from a vantage point in orbit that will allow it to take readings on a scale never achieved before. – Source: www.SAnews.gov.za
 
 
SA LAUNCHES ONE OF AFRICA'S BIGGEST WIND FARMS
 
Built by a consortium led by British company Globeleq, the 138- megawatt (MW) wind farm is one of Africa's biggest – larger than the 120-MW Ashegoda windfarm that was unveiled by Ethiopia in October 2013, though not as big as the Tarfaya wind farm in south-western Morocco, which started producing energy in April and will eventually generate up to 300 MW of electricity.
   
 
 
 
The R3-billion Jeffrey's Bay wind farm, located between the towns of Jeffrey’s Bay and Humansdorp in South Africa's Eastern Cape province, was officially inaugurated recently.

The Jeffrey's Bay wind farm, comprising 60 80-metre high turbines spread over 3 700 hectares, will supply enough clean, renewable electricity to power more than 100 000 homes a year, helping South Africa to avoid production of 420 000 tonnes of carbon dioxide annually.

The facility was built under the Government's renewable energy programme for independent power producers, which aims to add 3 725 MW of wind, solar photovoltaic and concentrating solar power to South Africa's energy mix. – Source: www.southafrica.info
 
 
 
SA'S VAN DER LINDE WINS FIA DRIVER OF YEAR
 
Van der Linde was the official representative of the African continent.
   
 
 
South African teen Kelvin van der Linde won the Driver of the Year Award for the 2014 International Automobile Federation’s (FIA) Young Driver Excellence Academy during a ceremony at the Paul Ricard circuit in France on 11 July.

Van der Linde (18) was presented with a trophy and certificate at the culmination of a seven-month programme that included five different workshops attended by 10 young racing drivers from eight countries.

Van der Linde won the 2012 South African VW Cup and 2013 European VW Scirocco R-Cup, the youngest driver to have won either of these titles. He leads the 2014 ADAC GT Masters Championship for GT3 sports cars in Europe at the halfway stage in an Audi R8 with co-driver Rene Rast. – Source: www.wheels24.co.za
 
 
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