Flash Briefing: EFF torpedoes EWC; Eskom reveals ‘green’ plan; SA factory sentiment plunges

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  • The ANC’s aim to amend section 25 of the constitution to allow for land expropriation without compensation may have been torpedoed by the EFF over a disagreement on who would ultimately own any commandeered assets. In what might result in a bill being presented to parliament without the necessary backing of either the DA or EFF, a meeting between the ANC and the red berets last week has ended in a stalemate, prompting the governing party to press ahead with its plans alone. It needs the support from the EFF to rack up enough votes for a two-thirds majority, but that party is insisting that the state take custodianship of all land, which the ANC opposes on the grounds that this constitutes nationalisation and would prove chaotic for land ownership. Justice minister Ronald Lamola, who has been leading the negotiations with the EFF, said in an interview with the Sunday Times the ANC would now go it alone and would seek to achieve its objective through the Expropriation Bill, which is also before parliament. The bill allows for the expropriation of certain categories of land without compensation with the courts being the final arbiter. Listen to the BizNews Power Hour interview with IRR’s Terence Corrigan.
  • Eskom Chief Executive Officer Andre de Ruyter laid out a funding plan to help the company, which generates the bulk of South Africa’s power from coal, transition away from the use of the dirtiest fossil fuel. De Ruyter said the company is proposing a multi lender loan facility from development finance institutions that would be paid out in segments over a number of years. Mandy Rambharos, the head of Eskom’s just energy transition department, has previously said the transition could cost $10 billion. The utility is considering projects, ranging from wind power to solar, hydropower and gas.
  • An index measuring South African factory sentiment plunged by a record in July, after a week of deadly riots, looting and arson disrupted supply chains, industrial output and demand for manufactured goods. Absa’s purchasing managers’ index, compiled by the Bureau for Economic Research, fell to 43.5 from 57.4 in June, the Johannesburg-based lender said Monday in an emailed statement. The monthly decline was the largest since record keeping began almost 22 years ago.