Fiscal prudence ‘good news for investors’

first_img26 October 2011The South African government is committed to maintaining prudent fiscal policy, which is good news for investors, BoE Private Clients said following Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan’s Medium-Term Budget on Tuesday.“Given the global backdrop of sovereign risk and the potential for years of slower growth – as austerity and consolidation loom – the value of this commitment cannot be overestimated,” BoE Private Clients economist Madalet Sessions said in a statement.“Not only did Minister Gordhan highlight the trade-off between government consumption expenditure and infrastructure investment, but he also indicated a clear preference by stating that South Africa had to prioritise public infrastructure spending,” she said.“He further demonstrated government’s commitment to enhancing the growth potential of the economy by saying that the country had to borrow to invest in infrastructure – not government consumption.”Gordhan said for the next three years, the National Treasury would aim to moderate spending growth in order to stabilise debt as a percentage of GDP.“This commitment to prudence and fiscal consolidation over the medium term suggests that SA’s fiscal affairs will continue to stack up well in comparison with developed markets,” said Sessions.“This prudence should in the long-run pay handsome dividends as the threat of higher taxes and interest rates in the future remain contained.”Sessions said this would enhance South Africa’s attractiveness as an investment destination.Sapalast_img read more

Education boost for Gauteng

first_imgWith 36 new schools opening in Gautengprovince alone in early 2012, morechildren will be able to receive a soundbasic education. (Image: Shamin Chibba)MEDIA CONTACTS • Charles Phahlane  Communications head, Gauteng   education dept  +27 11 355 1530 or +27 71 860 4496. RELATED ARTICLES • SA businesses urged to adopt schools • SA prioritises quality education • Zuma: SA to meet 2015 education goal • Tackling SA’s education challenges • Can drive raises R8.5m for educationEmily van RijswijckThe Gauteng Department of Education is making good on its promise to step up education efforts, with 36 new schools opening and 500 additional teachers reporting for duty in the first term of 2012.Another 300 pre-fabricated classrooms will also be added to existing schools where overcrowding is a problem.Thirteen of the schools will be ready to accept pupils when inland provinces start their 2012 academic year on 18 January, while another five will open later in the month.The remainder of the schools will be opened during the rest of the first term.While the majority of the new school buildings are pre-fabricated buildings, five of the new schools are solid brick and mortar structures.This brings the number of primary and secondary schools in the province to 2 595 – including independent, non-subsidised schools – with almost 72 000 teachers.The buildup to the new school year already starts six to eight months before, with teachers required to place orders for their support materials in May and actual pupil admissions taking place from August to October the year before.“It’s all systems go for the start of the new academic year,” education MEC Barbara Creecy confirmed at a recent press briefing, adding that the new facilities will go some way towards alleviating pressure in some of the overcrowded schools.Demand for learning space Of the nine provinces, Gauteng has seen the biggest rise in pupil numbers in recent years.According to Creecy, pupil numbers has been growing on average by 2% over the last five years, which means the province has to make space for about 36 000 additional children each year.The province has over 2-million pupils, while more than 14-million children attend school countrywide.“There is no other province that has experienced this level of demand for learning space,” said Creecy in her mid-term budget speech last year.In areas such as informal settlements, where it’s not always possible to build new schools, the education department has expanded its scholar transport scheme to accommodate these already disadvantaged children.In addition a budget of R100-million (US$12.5-million) has been allocated for pre-fabricated classrooms in schools where there is overcrowding.“We will provide 300 pre-fabricated classrooms and 100 pre-fabricated ablution blocks within the financial year,” said Creecy.Maintenance work at existing schools is also ongoing, with work in progress at 42 sites.Schools at the coast opened one week before, with the Western Cape Education Department welcoming pupils at 11 new schools in 2012. In 2011 the Gauteng education department opened six new schools.Aiming for millennium goals South Africa aims to eliminate all mud schools over the next three years and to improve basic safety and functionality of about 3 600 schools by 2014 as part of its contribution to the UN Millennium Development Goals, said President Jabob Zuma during a Parliamentarian session after his State of the Nation address in 2011.The Millennium Development Goal for education is to ensure that, by 2015, the majority of children all over the world are able to access and complete a full course of primary schooling. The government also hopes to increase enrolment rates in secondary schools to 95% by 2014.According to basic education minister Angie Motshekga, concerted efforts on the government’s part has resulted in rises in gross enrolment rates by 20% in primary education and about 15% in secondary education.“In fact, South Africa has almost achieved universal access in primary education,” said Motshekga at a December 2011 meeting on building public-private partnerships in education.Statistics South Africa’s 2010 general household survey found that nationally, 72,8% of persons aged 7 to 24 were attending educational institutions.Steady gains have been made since 2002, yet the number of young people not studying remains unacceptable – most respondents indicated that this was for financial reasons, a situation that the government is addressing. The right to basic education is entrenched in South Africa’s Constitution.Helping children to learnJust in Gauteng alone, almost 900 000 learners are attending the 1 237 no-fee schools, said Creecy. Of these children, over 800 000 also benefit from the government’s nutritional programme.Nationally, Statistics South Africa recorded that the percentage of pupils countrywide who paid no tuition fees increased from 0.7% in 2002 to 54.6% in 2010.To keep up with rising demands, the Gauteng education department’s budget has increased by over 13% from 2010/11 to 2011/12, with R25.9-billion ($3.2-billion) allocated for the current financial year.“Almost 74% of this budget will be spent on salaries for teachers, school administrative staff and office based personnel,” said Creecy.last_img read more

National development is South Africa’s priority

first_img6 May 2015Co-ordinating, monitoring and evaluating the implementation of the National Development Plan (NDP) is at the top of his department’s priorities, according to Jeff Radebe, the planning, monitoring and evaluation minister in the Presidency.The Department of Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation was committed to institutionalising long-term planning, building on its five years’ experience since it was established, he said on 5 May before tabling his department’s budget vote.It was pleased with the work it had done so far.Operation PhakisaSince the launch of Operation Phakisa, the first project focusing on the ocean’s economy, key initiatives had been identified to realise the immense potential of the ocean’s economy to contribute to radical economic transformation, Radebe said.“Progress made since the launch of the Ocean’s Economy Operation Phakisa includes commitment of R7-billion of public sector investment in our ports by Transnet Ports Authority, amongst other investments made.”Construction of a new berth in Saldana Bay had been started, and progress could also be seen in the extension of the Mossgas Quay and the refurbishment of the Offshore Supply Base, valued at R9.2-billion of public and private investment.The Department of Trade and Industry had also designated that working vessels must meet a 60% local content target. “The Treasury Instruction Note issued will ensure compliance with this in all tenders,” said the minister.Various aquaculture projects had been launched, he said, that were benefiting many rural communities by enabling them to make a living from the seas and inland fresh water reserves.“Furthermore, the Department of Higher Education and Training has developed skills implementation plans aligned with these initiatives. To this end, the South African International Maritime Institute has been identified as the institution that would facilitate maritime skills development, with the support [of the education department].”Health and miningThe second Operation Phakisa initiative introduced in 2014 focused on improving the quality of services in primary health care, said Radebe. A detailed plan for improving service delivery in public sector clinics in all provinces had been developed and approved by the National Health Council.“We call this the Ideal Clinic initiative. It was undertaken in collaboration with provinces, districts, clinic managers as well as the private sector and non-profit sector,” he said.“Operation Phakisa Labs will also be conducted in the mining and education sectors.” In the former, the focus would be on increasing investment, transforming the sector and improving mineral beneficiation to drive radical economic transformation.In education, the focus would be on an information and communication technology approach to enhancing basic education.National Youth PolicyDeputy Minister Buti Manamela would explain the youth aspects in detail in the Budget Vote Speech, Radebe said. His department has a mandate to mainstream, provide oversight and lead the government’s efforts on youth development.“We have taken a different approach to tackling youth issues and we have gotten rid of [the] government’s approach to youth issues whereby we would ask them what they think, ignore what they say and do as we want, and adopted a new approach of consultation,” Radebe said.Manamela recently held several consultative meetings with youth across the country regarding the National Youth Policy (NYP) 2020. These culminated in the NYP 2020 Consultative Conference in March, which resulted in the inclusion of one more pillar to the four that existed initially.“When we commenced with the consultative process of the NYP 2020, we initially had four pillars of the policy comprising skills and education, economic inclusion and participation, health and well-being of young people, and nation building and social cohesion.“Through the inputs received from the youth through this consultative process that took place, we have included another pillar to form part of the policy, which is building youth machinery for effective delivery and responsiveness.”Inputs from the NYP 2020 conference were being finalised and would be adopted during Youth Month, in June. He said the policy would then guide the drafting of the integrated youth development strategy, which will be the blueprint for radically spearheading youth development against the backdrop of lack of skills and high unemployment.“The [Department of Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation] will monitor the implementation of the policy and its impact. As we finalise the youth policy. we give meaning to it by championing the development of the youth who are future leaders of this country,” Radebe said.“Thus, by prioritising youth development through education, entrepreneurship and job creation, it will be both a tribute to the Freedom Charter as well as to the future of our country.”Source: SAnews.govlast_img read more

Big passenger gains from Salt Lake City makeover.

first_imgA rendering of the airport redevelopment. Image: SLC. It’s been 50 years—five full decades—since Salt Lake City International Airport got more than a mere makeover.Now, that’s about to change.Delta Air Lines’ pivotal western hub is getting a full-blown $US3.6-billion blitz of a rebuild.Phase One is set for a 2020 debut. The last of the massive project is set to come online four years later.The terminal layout will be the soul of simplicity: a large central terminal connected via an underground passenger terminal to a pair of linear concourses. This arrangement will replace the present geriatric terminal.The new facility is set to move both passengers and aircraft about more efficiently. A case-in-point is that most up and down movements via escalator will be eliminated, making the terminal easier and quicker to navigate.The efficiency theme carries through to the tarmac. Salt Lake City airport (SLC) says the new concourses will eliminate aircraft parking bottlenecks, allowing airlines to get their aircraft to the gate and back into the air faster than they’re able now. The bottom line for passengers is fewer delays.The Salt Lake City Department of Airports says the US$3.6-billion rebuild is being paid for entirely through user fees, primarily by the airlines. Salt Lake City International contends, “Even after the project is complete, SLC will have a significantly lower cost per passenger than other major US .” This matters much to continually cost-conscious carriers.”READ: Luggage fees soar as airline bagmen strike.A bit of context: SLC as we know it today is the product of the 1987 merger of Delta and Western Airlines, a classy major airline that fell prey to the merger mania that swept the airline industry in the late 1980s.Currently, Delta commands some 70 percent of the 370 daily scheduled departures. The airport lofts nonstop flights to almost 98 cities.Delta can fly you nonstop from Salt Lake City to London and Paris. KLM flies nonstop to Amsterdam.When the airport’s spacious new terminal and complex become a reality (workers recently “topped out” construction of the project’s first phase) international market access should get a boost, opening up even more connections alternatives—especially for flyers used to arch-rival Denver International.DEN lies a mere 391 air miles to the East, over the Rocky and Wasatch mountain ranges.last_img read more

Georgia ~ Multiple Taxes: Relief to Hurricane Matthew Victims Updated to Include Additional Counties

first_imgCCH Tax Day ReportThe Georgia Department of Revenue has updated its announcement concerning state tax relief to the victims of Hurricane Matthew to include Brantley, Candler, Emanuel, Evans, Jenkins, Long, Pierce, Tattnall and Toombs counties. (TAXDAY, 2016/10/19, S.2 )The updated news release can be viewed on the department’s website at http://dor.georgia.gov.Press Release, Georgia Department of Revenue, October 26, 2016last_img

Anil Kumble inducted into ICC Hall of Fame at MCG

first_imgFormer India captain Anil Kumble Anil Kumble. File photo: PTI.Former India captain Anil Kumble was on Sunday inducted into the International Cricket Council Hall of Fame at the Melbourne Cricket Ground.Kumble is just the fourth Indian to be included in the elite group, joining Sunil Gavaskar, Kapil Dev and Bishan Bedi.Australian legend Betty Wilson was also inducted into the ICC Hall of Fame on Sunday, along with Kumble.”It’s an honour to be inducted into the ICC Cricket Hall of Fame,” Kumble said.”Indeed, it will be a great moment of pride to receive it during the ICC Cricket World Cup 2015 at the Melbourne Cricket Ground I deem it as a great privilege to join the list of great cricketing luminaries,” he added.The 44-year-old played 132 Tests for India, capturing 619 wickets and became the second man in history to take 10 wickets in an innings when he dismantled Pakistan in 1999 to finish with figures of 10-74.”Anil was an outstanding international cricketer, a very well-respected opponent, a great statesman for his country and a role model for millions of aspiring cricketers,” said ICC Chief Executive David Richardson.”He played hard but within the spirit of the game. His performance and record speak volumes for his tenacity, commitment, endurance and service to the game.”Alongside Kumble, Wilson becomes the second Australian woman in the Hall of Fame behind champion batter Belinda Clark.Wilson, considered one of the greatest female cricketers of all-time, played 11 Tests between 1947 and 1958, scoring 862 runs at an average of 57.4 and claimed 68 wickets at 11.8 runs apiece. In 1957 against England, Wilson became the first cricketer, male or female, to take score a century and take 10 wickets in a Test.advertisementKumble and Wilson become the 77th and 78th inductees into the Hall of Fame.last_img read more

World Cup, 1st Quarterfinal: South Africa vs Sri Lanka- Factbox

first_imgSri Lanka hold the edge with 29 wins out of 59 games against South Africa in ODIsAfter a gruelling 42 games in the league stage, top eight teams are now ready to lock horns in the knockout stage – slated to begin with Sri Lanka’s exciting clash with South Africa in the first quarterfinal of the ICC World Cup on Wednesday.Eight Quarter-finalists On one hand where South Africa will be eager to get rid of the ‘chokers’ tag and come good against their opponents, Sri Lanka will be counting on their World Cup experience and red-hot form to get the better of the Porteas in the quarterfinal.Here’s a look at the facts on the World Cup quarterfinal between Sri Lanka and South Africa scheduled at the Sydney Cricket Ground:SOUTH AFRICACaptain: AB de VilliersCoach: Russell DomingoSquad: AB de Villiers(c), Hashim Amla, Kyle Abbott, Farhaan Behardien, Quinton de Kock(wk), JP Duminy, Faf du Plessis, Imran Tahir, David Miller, Morne Morkel, Wayne Parnell, Aaron Phangiso, Vernon Philander, Rilee Rossouw, Dale Steyn.Results so far at 2015 World Cup(Played 6, Won 4 and Lost 2):- Beat Zimbabwe by 62 runs. (David Miller and JP Duminy starred in a record 256-run fifth wicket stand to sink Zimbabwe)- Lost to India by 130 runs. (Could not contain India’s top order and imploded while chasing)- Beat West Indies by 257 runs. (De Villiers blasted a 66-ball 162 not out and they shot out West Indies in 34th over)- Beat Ireland by 201 runs. (Centuries by Amla and Du Plessis set the tone for another huge win)advertisement- Lost to Pakistan by 29 runs (D/L method). (Bowled out Pakistan in 47th over but faltered in chase)- Beat UAE by 146 runs. (Solid middle order batting laid foundation for easy win)Best performances:AB de Villiers (417 runs): Enhanced his 360-degree batting reputation with scintillating shot-making. Third in the run-getters’ list with a mind-boggling 144-plus strike rate.Morne Morkel (13 wickets): Outshone pace colleague Dale Steyn, generating disconcerting bounce from lively pitches to trouble opponents.Key to beating Sri Lanka: Proteas will need to negate Kumar Sangakkara’s red-hot form and see through Lasith Malinga’s tricky overs.SRI LANKACaptain: Angelo MathewsCoach: Marvan AtapattuSquad: Mathews, Tillakaratne Dilshan, Kumar Sangakkara(wk), Mahela Jayawardene, Angelo Mathews(c), Kusal Perera, Lahiru Thirimanne, Thisara Perera, Upul Tharanga, Sachithra Senanayake, Rangana Herath, Lasith Malinga, Nuwan Kulasekara, Suranga Lakmal, Dushmantha Chameera, Seekkuge Prasanna.Results so far at 2015 World Cup(Played 6, Won 4 and Lost 2):- Lost to New Zealand by 98 runs. (Blown away by breezy knocks from Brendon McCullum and Corey Anderson)- Beat Afghanistan by four wickets. (Jayawardene century helps them escape a potential upset)- Beat Bangladesh by 92 runs. (Centuries by Dilshan and Sangakkara set up big win)- Beat England by nine wickets. (Sangakkara and Thirimanne hit tons to chase down a 300-plus target with ease)- Lost to Australia by 64 runs. (Glenn Maxwell’s 53-ball 102 trumps Sangakkara ton)- Beat Scotland by 148 runs. (Sangakkara and Dilshan hit tons in facile win)Best performance:Kumar Sangakkara (496 runs): Became the first batsman to hit four successive World Cup centuries and looks unstoppable.Lasith Malinga (11 wickets): Getting better with every match while sending down toe-crushing yorkers and slow bouncers with characteristic regularity.Key to beating South Africa: Sri Lanka need to contain dangerous AB de Villiers and bat around veteran Kumar Sangakkara.South Africa vs Sri Lanka(head-to-head)The two teams have faced each other at the Sydney Cricket Ground.Total Played(ODIs): 59South Africa: 28Sri Lanka: 29Tied: 1No Result: 1Last ODI: South Africa beat Sri Lanka by 82 runs at Hambantota on July 12, 2014.last_img read more

LEADERLESS CRTC IS ADRIFT AND WITHOUT A MISSION

first_img Twitter Also in the last few weeks, ADR-TV, an independent broadcaster dedicated to public security, has pressured the federal government via a cabinet appeal to require the CRTC to consider its existing and fully functional application for Emergency Public Alerting for Wireless, an application which had been used by law enforcement in Quebec since 2010, rather than a costly new $25-million alternative proposed by the commission which has yet to be developed.READ MORE Facebook Advertisement LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Advertisementcenter_img Never over the last 50 years have the CRTC’s decisions been as hotly contested. Over the last two months, no fewer than five appeals to federal cabinet have been launched, requesting the cancellation of decisions made by the outgoing Chair of the Commission, Jean-Pierre Blais. There is no precedent in the history of the CRTC for such an avalanche of cabinet appeals and such a degree of general exasperation.Over the last few days, the Canadian Media Producers Association (CMPA), the Alliance of Canadian Cinema, Television and Radio Artists (ACTRA), and the Directors Guild of Canada (DGC) have jointly appealed the CRTC’s decisions on licence renewals for the major private broadcasters.“This is a ruling handed down by the outgoing chair at the CRTC, a Harper appointee who called for an end to nearly every support for film and television from Canadian hiring requirements to tax credits. Now, the Trudeau government has to decide whether to stand with Mr. Harper’s man, or stand with audiences and creators,” said Tim Southam, president of the Directors Guild of Canada.On the francophone side, the appeals filed by SARTEC (writers), AQPM (producers), ARRQ (directors), UDA (performers), AQTIS (technicians) and ADISQ (music recording), accuse the CRTC of failing to meet its obligations and ignoring “the objectives of Canadian broadcasting policy.” Advertisement Login/Register With: Former CRTC Chairman Jean-Pierre Blaislast_img read more

Jessica Biel to Star in Facebook Watchs LIMETOWN Filming in Vancouver This

first_imgAdvertisement Twitter Advertisement LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Showrunner: Zack Akers.Producers: Josh Appelbaum, Andre Nemec, Jeff Pinkner, Scott Rosenberg and Jessica Biel.Jessica Biel starred in the first season of crime anthology The Sinner and continues to executive produce that series.By Susan Gittins | Hollywood North Buzz.RELATED LINKSFacebook’s ‘Limetown’ is a mystery series starring Jessica BielIt’s based on a popular podcast of the same name.Jessica Biel to Star in, Produce Facebook Watch Series ‘Limetown’Facebook Watch has greenlit the drama series “Limetown” with Jessica Biel set to star and executive produce.Jessica Biel to Star in ‘Limetown’ Podcast Adaptation for FacebookBased on the fictional podcast of the same name, ‘Limetown’ follows a radio journalist as she unravels the mystery behind the disappearance of more than 300 people at a neuroscience research facility in Tennessee.Jessica Biel To Star In ‘Limetown’ Facebook TV Series Based On PodcastFacebook Watch has given a 10-episode order to another series with a big-name female star set as the lead. The streaming platform has picked up Limetown, starring and executive produced by Jessica Biel. Advertisement Based on a popular podcast, Limetown follows Lia Haddock (Jessica Biel), a journalist for American Public Radio (APR), as she unravels the mystery behind the disappearance of over 300 people at a mysterious neuroscience research facility in Limetown, Tennessee.Filming dates: December 3rd to March 18th.Cast: Jessica Biel. Login/Register With: Facebooklast_img read more