• June 5th, 2020

Business

Trustco Finance secures N$345 million loan

Trustco has informed shareholders that DEG, a development finance institution based in the Federal Republic of Germany, in association with the German Development agency, KfW Group, approved a United States Dollar denominated term loan facility to Trustco Finance.

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MTC named most admired Namibian brand

Following the global release of the “2020 Brand Africa 100: Africa’s Best Brands on Africa Day”, Brand Africa, in partnership with TBWA\Paragon, announced Namibia’s rankings of the most admired brands. International sport and lifestyle brand Nike is the most admired brand overall, while local telecommunications giant MTC was named the most admired local brand. 

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Breweries urges responsible behaviour when alcohol sales reopen

Many Namibians are eagerly anticipating the lifting of the alcohol ban as the country, except Walvis bay, moves to stage 3 of the lockdown exit strategy for the next 28 days. As Namibians navigate the country’s gradual reopening, Namibia Breweries Limited (NBL) managing director Marco Wenk said there’s no doubt Covid-19 will have a lasting impact on society long after the current state of emergency and the risks associated with the pandemic are over.

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Business leadership during a crisis

Merriam-Webster defines a crisis as “an unstable or difficult time or state of affairs”. It is unplanned or uncontrolled change. During times of crisis, leadership is critical. While the existing economic crisis caused by Covid-19 is unprecedented, small businesses have historically proved themselves to be flexible and resilient.

Economic woes cannot only be attributed to virus - experts

Economic experts opined that the national budget, including the growing budget deficit, were in line with expectations, but agreed that the current financial situation could not only be attributed to the Covid-19 health crisis. This is because the domestic economy had already contracted during three out of the past four years while policy frameworks to attract domestic and foreign direct investment has not been conducive.

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Fuel prices remain unchanged

In an effort to maintain price stability in domestic fuel market, the price of fuel stay untouched. The Ministry of Mines and Energy has, through its monthly fuel price review, resolved to keep fuel pump prices unchanged countrywide for the month of June 2020.

Covid-19 has moved fiscal policy

The outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic has changed the direction of government’s fiscal policy from fiscal consolidation to mitigation of the spread and impacts of the virus in the country. Additional expenditure has been considered to provide for the fight against Covid-19, increasing the already high government spending, while revenue is expected to fall to the lowest level. 

Economic contraction expected to remain well into 2021 - Shiimi

The Namibian economy is projected to contract by 6.6% in real terms during the 2020/21 financial year. Finance minister Iipumbu Shiimi on Wednesday cautioned that this contraction may linger on well into 2021 at a moderate rate of 1.1%, with the new normal average growth rates of between 2.0 and 3.6% in 2022 and beyond.  

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MTC launches multiple Aweh product solution

Namibia’s first telecommunications provider MTC on Wednesday launched its latest market offering termed “Multiple Aweh” product solution. This solution will enable customers to subscribe to more than one and up to three Aweh subscriptions at a time. 

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SADC should prioritise investments to save economies

Southern African Development Community (SADC) member states should be developing roadmaps and action plans that prioritise investments and channel scarce resources to identified economic sectors to resuscitate their economies, strengthen resilience and improve competitiveness.

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NBL strengthens support to Covid-19 shelter 

Following its recent donation of 53 tents towards the Covid-19 homeless shelter initiative by the Ministry of Health & Social Services, Namibia Breweries Limited (NBL) followed up with further support of this project, with a beverage donation valued at close to N$100 000.

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New commemorative N$30 banknote now official tender

The Bank of Namibia officially put the new N$30 commemorative banknote into circulation on Friday at an event held to mark the issuance of the note as a legal tender in the country. This means the new N$30 note banknote can now be used for the payment of goods and services alongside the current family of banknotes. 

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From muffins to low-cost housing

Leena Haivera is a 24-year-old female entrepreneur from Windhoek. The last article about successful entrepreneurs from Katutura I dedicate to her as an example that even really disadvantaged Namibians can make it independently of their background and drawbacks in business ventures that is if they are passionate and optimistic about their businesses. 

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Social distancing defied

Chaotic re-emergence…Social distancing was a near impossible task when the Roads Authority (RA) reopened its Namibia Traffic Information System (NaTIS) offices on Monday when hordes of people flocked to the already long queues.

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Capricorn Group and Entrepo Holdings support vulnerable

The world continues to face an unprecedented time in fighting an unseen enemy. Many countries are struggling to take care of the needs of their people and meet the demands to combat the virus at the same time. Namibia is no different with several impoverished communities in desperate need of relief.

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Hangana Seafood boosts Lüderitz first responders

In support of fighting the Covid-19 war, the Ministry of Health and Social Services (MoHSS) department in Lüderitz was this week empowered with equipment to the value of N$100 000, sponsored by the Ohlthaver & List (O&L) Group through its subsidiary Hangana Seafood, in particular, Hangana Abalone in Lüderitz.

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Bukalo allocates over 100 residential plots

Bukalo Village Council has approved has the sale of single residential immovable properties or plots to various private developers. The village council CEO, Martin Limbo, highlighted that about 101 plots at Bukalo Extension will be developed by First Capital Home Loans.  

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NamPower makes two exco appointments

NamPower has appointed Fritz Jacobs as its Chief Operating Officer, effective 1 May 2020. Jacobs joins NamPower with over 25 years of corporate and private sector experience, ranging from consulting engineering, telecommunications, electricity, mining and construction environments. He worked at organisational levels from functional to executive and at governance as well as board level. Jacobs was also previously employed at NamPower as general manager: NamPower Investments (New Business).

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Africa’s travel industry needs US$10 billion

Alexandre de Juniac, the Director General of the International Air Transport Association (IATA) is leading an urgent appeal to global financial institutions to support Africa’s travel and tourism industry. Speaking from IATA’s head office in Geneva, Switzerland, De Juniac said the industry has been decimated by Covid-19 and its associated travel restrictions. 

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SME thrives in extremely competitive market

Based on my experience of over 30 years in promoting small businesses in four Asian countries and since 2000 in Namibia, such programmes can only be successful if the participants are carefully selected and if the required training is implemented in the business with additional mentoring. 

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NWR prepares for post-Covid-19

Namibia Wildlife Resorts (NWR) management says the institutions have been hard at work addressing some limitations it identified within some of its resorts in the Etosha National Park. At the same time, NWR has been preparing its soon-to-be-launched Hospitality Institute (HI) for later this year.

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GIPF in search of former members with unclaimed benefits

The Government Institutions Pension Fund (GIPF) has appealed to all former members who left employment due to retirement, resignation, ill-health, disability or retrenchment and have not claimed or received their pension benefits from GIPF to contact the HR offices of their former employers to complete a claim form with the relevant supporting documents for submission to the Fund as soon as possible.  

Team Namibia calls for conducive environment to create jobs

For Namibia to survive in the medium and long-term, every effort is required to create jobs. As in many other countries, Namibia’s fiscal space to continue supporting the private sector long after the lockdown period is extremely limited. After a four-year economic crisis, the coronavirus pandemic outbreak finds Namibia in an extremely vulnerable position. 

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Air Namibia resumes domestic flights

Air Namibia will start flying again locally as of today, following the announcement of stage two under the state of emergency. Regional and international flights remain suspended until further notice.   Passengers can now fly between Eros and Ondangwa, Rundu, Katima Mulilo, Lüderitz, Oranjemund and Walvis Bay.

Risks to Namibia’s financial stability have increased significantly – central bank

The latest Financial Stability Report (FSR) by the Bank of Namibia (BoN) shows that risks to Namibia’s financial stability have increased significantly since 2018 as a result of the economic contraction experienced in 2019, coupled with the expected impact of Covid-19 going forward. Since the central bank’s last FSR, the probability and impact of most risks increased, particularly in the macroeconomic environment. 

Customer care a question of survival even now

Why customer care is essential during lockdown? Several entrepreneurs may ask this question. Without customers during the current lockdown customer care is not required. This is true, but every entrepreneur has to plan for the future. Running businesses often told me: “We don’t have time for new approaches. We must concentrate on making money.”

DBN suspends four staff members 

The Development Bank of Namibia has suspended four of its employees, pending an investigation into alleged breach of the bank’s operational standards. The suspensions were effected as a result of anonymous tip-offs received. 

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Businesses team up with public sector

WALVIS BAY - The success of smart partnerships is evident in Erongo region with the private sector taking the leading role in assisting the public health sector as well as residents in the region during the Covid-19 pandemic.

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Entrepreneurs construct decontamination chamber

​​​​​​​Curbing the spread…Namibian entrepreneur Sylvanie Beukes passes through a disinfecting chamber that he constructed together with partners, Abed Nakalenga and water specialist Sidney Beukes. The trio built the locally manufactured hands-free disinfectant chamber, which they hail as first of its kind for Namibia.

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ECB leaves tariffs unchanged until 2021

The Electricity Control Board (ECB) has confirmed that electricity tariffs will not change and therefore will remain at N$1.65 per kilowatt-hour for the period 2020/2021. The approved tariff is applicable to NamPower bulk customers, such as Regional Electricity Distributors (REDs), local authorities, regional councils and mines. 

Labour ministry cautions against fraudsters 

The ministry of labour has cautioned the public against fraudsters claiming to be ministry employees. In a recent statement, the ministry notes that it has become aware of the alleged fraudsters contacting members of the public, particularly employees who have labour cases at the Labour Commissioner (LC). The perpetrators initiate the contact with intention to solicit money from the public.

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FNB Namibia provides relief to SMEs

Since the beginning of the Covid-19 outbreak, First National Bank Namibia has been closely monitoring developments, with the view of provisionally restructuring its operations and solutions to meet the changing demands and minimising the impact of the pandemic.

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Covid-19 crisis is far from over - Thieme

The Ohlthaver & List (O&L) Group, one of Namibia’s largest private sector companies employing about 6500 Namibians and contributing almost 4% to GDP, said the impact of Covid-19 on Namibia and the rest of the world are not yet fully understood but will be felt for many years to come.

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Repo rate cut effected to support households and businesses

Commercial banks have commenced with a reduction of their interest rates after the Bank of Namibia’s Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) on Wednesday cut the repo rate even further by 100 basis points to 4.25% in a bid to provide more relief for consumers. At its new level, the repo rate is expected to provide some short-term relief to borrowers.

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QKR Namibia Navachab Gold Mine digs deep to help fight Covid-19

The oldest gold mine in the country, QKR Namibia Navachab Gold Mine, situated just outside Karibib, has responded to private sector appeal by President Hage Geingob by reaffirming its support towards the nation-wide efforts to address some of the challenges posed by the Covid-19 pandemic in supporting the Karibib community.

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Momentum Namibia to acquire Alexander Forbes Insurance Namibia

Momentum Metropolitan Namibia, through their subsidiary Momentum Short Term Insurance Namibia, will acquire all the issued shares of Alexander Forbes Insurance Namibia. After the two entities signed the binding agreement, the transaction will be finalised pending regulatory approvals from the Namibian Competition Commission and the Namibia Financial Institutions Supervisory Authority. 

B2Gold Namibia approves N$6m to fight Covid-19

At a recent board meeting, B2Gold Namibia approved the allocation of N$6 million towards Covid-19 amelioration efforts. According to a company spokesperson, this donation will be split between targeted government interventions and a non-governmental organization called the Development Workshop of Namibia (DW), which operates through the Namibian Chamber of Environment. 

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Doing business in turbulent times

The only thing that is certain about forecasting at the moment is that it is probably inaccurate. This sentiment resounds with many Namibian business people as we all try to make sense of and understand the uncertain future of doing business during the Covid-19 pandemic and the world thereafter.

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Tips on how to make working remotely work for you

Cast your mind back to a few weeks ago and imagine someone telling you the following: within the next few days, your child’s school or day-care will be closed. You won’t be able to leave your house unless it’s deemed “critical”. Essential and non-essential services will be redefined. You will work from home for an extended period. 

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Finance ministry clarifies Emergency Income Grant processes

The Ministry of Finance has clarified that people receiving social grants on behalf of others, such as orphans or vulnerable children and other relatives, do not qualify for the Emergency Income Grant (EIG). The finance ministry this weekend explained that the EIG system does not allow for double benefits for any person whose ID number is registered for any sort or social grant and those who will attempt to apply will be declined.

Letshego offers payment holiday

Letshego Namibia Holdings Ltd, the country’s largest micro-lender and a subsidiary of the 11-market strong Letshego Group, is taking proactive steps to support its customers through emerging economic challenges

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MTC dismisses 5G rumours

As the Coronavirus sweeps the globe, so do rumours about what caused it or how it is spread. One such rumour that has gained steam online is that MTC has secretly installed 5G towers while the Khomas and Erongo regions are on lockdown. 

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O&L Group collaborates with industry to address Covid-19 impact

“In these unprecedented times, it is important to stay focused and practice transcending actions through purpose, care and discipline. Collaboration amongst industry leadership and government has never been this phenomenal,” said O&L executive chairman and NCCI president Sven Thieme in a media statement issued on Wednesday. 

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Businesses must be innovative and trade borders must remain open - private sector

Faced with the prospect of an economy further devastated by Covid-19 after suffering from a recession for the last two years, a private sector task team spearheaded by the ministry of industrialisation and the Namibia Chamber of Commerce and Industry (NCCI) has encouraged businesses to be innovative in conducting their activities in order to minimise the spread of the deadly virus.

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Bankers Association explains funding relief by banks

The Bankers Association of Namibia (BAN) has provided further clarity to customers on the case-by-case funding relief, which is handled according to each bank’s respective rules. “It is important to clarify that monthly payments will not be waived altogether but will only be moved out for a limited period of time,” said Sarel van Zyl, current chairperson of BAN.

Huawei announces solid business performance for 2018/19

Huawei recently released its 2019 Annual Report detailing a solid business performance. The company’s global sales revenue in 2019 rounded off at CNY858.8 billion, up 19.1% year-on-year; its net profit reached CNY62.7 billion; and its cash flow from operating activities topped CNY91.4 billion, up 22.4% year-on-year.

‘We bring ICT to the people’

For thousands of years it was only a privilege of a few people to learn reading and writing. Lack of this knowledge was a tool, like the whip in slavery, to oppress the masses, in particular girls and women. Luckily, this has changed in most parts of the world including Namibia. 

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Medical funds urged to pay out Covid-19 cover

The Namibia Financial Institutions Supervisory Authority (Namfisa) has encouraged the public to adhere to all public notices issued by government in relation to Covid-19 and to contact their medical aid funds for clarity on their benefit option limits. 

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Covid-19 pushes fuel prices down

Petrol prices will come down by a whopping N$1.70 per litre and diesel will decrease N$1.20 per litre on 1 April 2020 as global demand for the oil wanes in the face of the crippling impact of the Covid-19 outbreak.  The massive drop in local oil prices was announced even as the local currency depreciated against the United States greenback. 

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MTC sets aside N$1 million to help fight coronavirus

MTC has embarked on an aggressive response strategy to help fight Coronavirus, setting in motion a plan to be funded with N$1 million. The funds will be distributed to different critical areas as per the strategy, including information sharing, education sharing, prevention, facility investment, as well as service delivery.

Bank Windhoek confirms new interest rates

In response to the announcement by the Monetary Policy Committee of the Bank of Namibia to decrease the policy rate as announced on 20 March 2020, Bank Windhoek hereby confirms the reduction of its Prime Lending Rate by 1.00% from 10.00% to 9.00%. The Mortgage Lending Rate will decrease from 11.00% to 10.00%

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Shiimi hailed as ‘breath of fresh air’ in finance ministry portfolio

Economists and business leaders have hailed former central bank governor Iipumbu Shiimi as new finance minister as a welcome development, given his extensive economic and banking background. President Geingob on Sunday appointed Shiimi to the finance ministry while former finance minister Calle Schlettwein, a trained biologist, has been moved to the merged agriculture, water and land reform ministry.

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Repo rate cut to 5.25% to cushion impact of Covid-19

The Bank of Namibia’s (BoN’s) Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) on Friday cut the repo rate by 100 basis points, from 6.25% to 5.25% to help cushion the anticipated impact of Covid-19 and support domestic economic activity, while maintaining the one-to-one link between the Namibia Dollar and the South African Rand.

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NSA halts census mapping due to Covid-19

The Namibia Statistics Agency (NSA) has confirmed the suspension of the census mapping exercise. As per the directive from President Hage Geingob, calling for a state of emergency because of the Covid-19 outbreak, NSA’s statistician general and CEO Alex Shimuafeni on Friday confirmed the Census mapping has been put on hold until 14 April 2020, or at least until the situation stabilises. 

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NamPost to remain open for business during virus crisis

In response to the confirmed Covid-19 cases in Namibia and the directives issued by the government and head of state, NamPost has implemented preventative measures as part of its overall action plan to protect the health of staff and clients throughout the country. As part of preventative measures, there will be restrictions on the number of clients in the post office dependent on the post office lay-out and size and customers will be requested to keep a distance of at least a metre as directed by the Ministry of Health and Social Services. 

Access to affordable financing key for economic development - BoN

Certain national developmental agendas can only be achieved through public education and some of the crucial issues pertaining to this, according to the Bank of Namibia, are policies related to fees and charges at banks and financial institutions. Director of Payment and Settlement Systems at the central bank, Barbara Dreyer, said that access to affordable financial products and services is a key driver for economic development. 

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GIPF sets aside N$25.9 billion to ensure benefit payments

The Government Institutions Pension Fund (GIPF) is aware of the outbreak of the coronavirus (Covid-19) and has taken the necessary precautions to protect its staff members by encouraging them to practice best hygienic methods such as washing their hands with soap regularly, applying alcohol-based hand sanitisers and wearing of protective gear such as masks and gloves where necessary.  

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Businesses postpone crucial events due to Covid-19

Businesses in the country are adhering to the call of President Hage Geingob on the suspension of mass gatherings for at least 30 days. This after Namibia confirmed two cases of coronavirus last week. Most events that were scheduled for April including expos and graduation ceremonies are now postponed.

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Fourth quarter residential property prices dampen

The FNB House Price Index stood at -4.7% y/y as at December 2019 compared to 0.5% y/y recorded over the same period of the preceding year. On a quarterly basis, the house price index growth has averaged -5.1% y/y in Q4 of 2019 compared to -2.4% y/y realised over the same period of 2018.

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Dundee invest N$25 million in heavy-duty machinery

OMUTHIYA – Dundee Precious Metals Tsumeb recently purchased industry heavy-duty machinery to be used in transportation of materials at the smelting mine. The machinery was procured from Barloworld Equipment Namibia to the tune of N$25 million and was handed over to Dundee last month. 

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CAM assessing coronavirus impact on markets

The coronavirus outbreak is having an extreme impact on the global financial markets. According to Capricorn Asset Management (CAM) the real cost to the actual economies is still unknown, and the future effects cannot be accurately determined as the situation is still developing. 

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Wholesale and retail sector expected to recover in 2020

The wholesale and retail trade sector is expected to recover to positive growth in 2020, after contractions during the preceding three years. Bank of Namibia projections show that the wholesale and retail sector is anticipated to grow by 1.4% and 1.5% during 2020 and 2021 respectively, from an estimated contraction of 2.5% in 2019. 

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Tender body unveils new corporate identity

The Central Procurement Board of Namibia (CPBN) yesterday launched its new corporate identity. Officiating at the occasion, Deputy Minister of Finance, Natangwe Ithete, said that for any business or organisation, a logo is the face of the company and in today’s competitive environment “a company and organisation needs to build strong, positive images and reputation in order to be distinguished from others”. 

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Nedbank’s new business banking offering for green projects

Last week Nedbank Namibia hosted an information sharing session for local businesses in need of financing specifically aimed at sustainable and green projects. At the event, participants heard firsthand how they could make use of the funding available to green their operations or start a climate-friendly business project.

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TransNamib aims for profitability

Over the past 10 plus years the national rail services operator, TransNamib, has incurred losses of more than N$1 billion but these financial misfortunes may soon be turned around as relatively new CEO, Johny Smith, aims to bring the parastatal into profitability within the next two years.

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Manufacturing sector growth to slow down - BoN

The Bank of Namibia (BoN) has projected growth in the manufacturing sector to slow down in 2020 and 2021. This is mainly due to being compared to a high base from 2019 that the central bank predicts will result in the sector to grow by 0.9% and 1.3% in 2020 and 2021, respectively.

EPZ Policy: Rise and fall in the diamond industry

The Export Processing Zone (EPZ) Act (Namibia) was implemented to meet the country’s industrialization goals. The policy is currently in the process to be phased out and replaced by the Special Economic Zone Act (SEZ) which might take another year before being fully implemented.

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Opinion - What makes businesses thrive during uncertainty? 

Businesses that thrive during uncertainty are those that have eagle eyes to identify critical opportunities within their macro-economic environments. Internal positioning is one of the core critical elements that help organisations create competitive capabilities in order to navigate all economic volatilities.

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IMF forecasts positive growth for Namibia

The prolonged recession that has gripped the domestic economy for the better part of the last three to four years is expected to be something of the past, as the International Monetary Fund (IMF) on Monday projected that Namibia will see positive growth in 2020 as the drought fades and mining production picks ramps up.

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Air Namibia suspends three senior staff

Air Namibia on Sunday confirmed the suspension of three of its senior managers with immediate effect. The suspensions, which took effect on Friday, 28 February were of Wimpie van Vuuren, senior manager: sales and  marketing; Johannes Blaauw, manager: cargo sales, and Abraham Nasab, manager: cargo operations.

Vigilance urged as scams increase

Standard Bank has cautioned the public to be vigilant as incidents of vishing are becoming more prevalent, resulting in many clients losing their hard-earned money at the hands of criminal syndicates.

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GIPF takes member education to the south

The Government Institutions Pension Fund (GIPF) is a statutory pension fund that was created by the Namibian government to provide pension and other related benefits to civil servants as well as employees of participating institutions established by Acts of Parliament. GIPF is a defined pension fund that provides guaranteed pension benefits to its large membership base, and the benefits are defined in terms of the Rules of the Fund.

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EPZ regime in the spotlight

Popular Democratic Movement (PDM) parliamentarian Nico Smit said the loopholes created by the tax concessions for Export Processing Zone (EPZ) companies and certain manufacturing firms have long been a direct and substantial source of revenue loss for the government.

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MTC to build 270 low-cost houses

Telecommunications giant MTC has set its sights on providing low-cost houses to the homeless and targets to hand over close to 270 houses in the next two years, said Tim Ekandjo, chief human capital and corporate affairs officer at MTC.

EIB expected to increase African investment

The European Investment Bank (EIB) is expected to increase its Africa financing to €4 billion (N$65.2 billion at an exchange rate of 16.3) in 2020. Looking ahead, the EIB expects to significantly increase engagement in both sub-Saharan and North Africa and to provide the €4 billion to support public and private investment across the continent in 2020. 

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Housing market remains stable

The rental market continues to bottom-out although at a moderate pace. In effect, the FNB Rental Index as at December 2019 shows a contraction of 0.8% - reflecting a steep improvement from a contraction of 8.6% recorded over the same period in 2018. 

NWR lowers its rates by a massive 70% for March

The year 2020 is a special year for NWR as the company becomes 21 years old just as Namibia celebrates becoming 30 years of age. In this context, Namibia Wildlife Resorts (NWR) has confirmed an unbelievable independence discount during the month of March 2020 with added incentives.

Made in Namibia cosmetics exhibit at German trade fair

The Namibia Network of the Cosmetics Industry (NANCi) with the support of the joint project between the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit GmbH (GIZ), Promotion of Business Advisory and Economic Transformation Services (ProBATS), and the Ministry of Industrialisation, Trade and SME Development sent a delegation of 10 SMEs to exhibit Cosmetics Made in Namibia products at the Vivaness 2020 organic and natural cosmetics trade fair. The event took place in Nürnberg, Germany from 12 to 15 February.

Namfisa and NTA to introduce training for insurance intermediaries

The Namibia Financial Institutions Supervisory Authority (Namfisa) and the Namibia Training Authority (NTA) have embarked on a project through which insurance intermediaries (agents and brokers) rendering financial services to the public (policyholder/potential policyholder) will soon be subjected to a compulsory market entry examination.

Namfisa and NTA to introduce training for insurance intermediaries

The Namibia Financial Institutions Supervisory Authority (Namfisa) and the Namibia Training Authority (NTA) have embarked on a project through which insurance intermediaries (agents and brokers) rendering financial services to the public (policyholder/potential policyholder) will soon be subjected to a compulsory market entry examination.

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CRAN roped in for fibre optic cable dispute

The Communications Regulatory Authority of Namibia (CRAN), without necessarily responding to all the matters raised, has issued a statement on the issue pertaining to the laying of fibre optic cables in the municipal boundaries of the City of Windhoek by Paratus Telecommunications (Pty) Limited. 

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Namdia improves gross profit by 17%

Despite an extremely challenging year for the Namibian economy coupled with the introduction of synthetic diamonds, Namib Desert Diamonds (Namdia) outperformed its target by an increase of 17% in gross profit compared to the previous financial year. 

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Bank Windhoek invests in women through Katuka

Bank Windhoek last week announced its partnership with the Katuka Mentorship Programme. At the event, Bank Windhoek’s Head of Corporate Affairs Hayley Allen said empowering women who are in business is the reason for supporting the Katuka Mentorship Programme and it is the perfect fit for the bank. 

Nezette takes over the helm of Etosha Fishing

Etosha Fishing Corporation has confirmed the appointment of Nezette Beukes as its new managing director (MD), effective 1 January 2020. Beukes previously held the position of financial director in the company from 2015 and has been acting in the position of MD since the resignation of its former MD Pieter Greeff in December 2018. 

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PowerCom commences tower construction at Walvis Bay

PowerCom Pty Ltd has commenced with the planned tower construction in Walvis Bay Extension 17. A recent ground-breaking ceremony confirmed the tower’s commencement as well as the company’s infrastructure CAPEX investment rollout for 2019/2020, which seeks to increase the company’s footprint and asset base to best service ICT players and offer last mile connectivity.  

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Namibian truckers frustrated by state of Zambian road

As cargo volumes continue to increase on the Walvis Bay-Ndola-Lubumbashi Development Corridor (WBNLDC), Namibian truckers continue to face an uphill battle once they enter Zambia, as the Livingston to Sesheke road leading to Lusaka and beyond to the Democratic republic of Congo remains in a dilapidated state.

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Opinion: NSA to host Census Resource Mobilisation Conference 

In 2021, Namibia will hold its 4th Population and Housing Census. The census is better known for counting people; however, the statistics that a population and housing census provides is much more than just counting people. Namibia’s first census was held in 1991, the second in 2001, the third in 2011 and the next one to be held in 2021, as indicated above. 

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Namibian IPP offering 120MW supply to Eskom

WINDHOEK - Namibian independent power producer Arandis Power says it is offering the South African utility Eskom 120MW of flexible power generation capacity within the framework of the Request for Information (RFI) that was issued on 13 December 2019 by the South African Department of Mineral Resources and Energy in respect of a “Risk Mitigation Power Procurement Programme”. 

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Platinum price per ounce increases

WINDHOEK – The full-year price per platinum ounce for the basket of metals sold increased by 27% to US$2,819/ounce compared to 2018 due to 48% and 73% price increases in palladium and rhodium, respectively. Anglo American revealed these figures last week.

In //Kharas we mean business - Kasete

KEETMANSHOOP – Despite losing more than 50 percent of its budget allocation due to government’s austerity measures during the previous financial year, the //Kharas Regional Council succeeded in awarding all its capital project tenders accordingly.

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RA moves on to final stretch of Whk to Okahandja road

WINDHOEK – The Roads Authority (RA) yesterday celebrated the completion within the stipulated timeframe and within budget of Section 4A of one of the busiest roads in the country, namely the freeway between Windhoek and Okahandja. Section 4A is comprised of 27.6 km of road which has now also been upgraded from a dual carriageway to a four-lane freeway. 

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Team Namibia and Finland assist SMEs to run viable businesses

WINDHOEK – At the conclusion of Team Namibia’s entrepreneurial training programme, which was funded by the Embassy of Finland to the value of N$1.76 million, the member-based organisation honoured the owners of 16 outstanding Katutura-based small and medium enterprises (SMEs). To this end an award ceremony was  held at Xwama Cultural Village in Katutura, Windhoek on Thursday, 23 January 2020.

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Fresh grapes exports improve to N$839 million

WINDHOEK – Good news for grape producers is that despite a downturn in the global economy, Namibian fresh grapes exports for 2019 continued to increase, recording a value of close to N$840 million and over 33 million kg in net-weight shipped out. This is more than double the revenue generated by fresh grapes exported in 2015, which produced around N$407 million in sales. 

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No respite expected for small businesses this year – Cirrus Securities

WINDHOEK – The Economic Outlook for 2020 by Cirrus Securities, a company started in 2017 with a focus on corporate advisory, capital raising and research, predicts that small businesses in Namibia are expected to remain under pressure during 2020. As a result, and depending on the severity of new government policies, Cirrus expects that many small businesses will either close their doors, or lay off further workers.

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SACU and UK sign MoU

WINDHOEK - Executive Secretary of the Southern African Customs Union (SACU) Paulina Mbala Elago and the United Kingdom’s director for economic diplomacy at the Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO), Lewis Neal, recently signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to support implementation of the ongoing SACU Customs Modernisation Programme.

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Rental index records smaller contraction

WINDHOEK - FNB Namibia’s latest rental index report, which was released yesterday, confirms that growth in rental prices remains in contractionary territory with the FNB Rent Price Index, recording a contraction of 1.9 percent at the end of September 2019, compared to a contraction of 8.6 percent over the same period last year.

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FNB House Price Index plunges into negative

WINDHOEK - In the latest FNB Residential Property Report, FNB’s Group Economist, Ruusa Nandago, states that the FNB House Price Index plunged further into negative territory at the end of September 2019, reaching a historic low of -5.1 percent y/y compared to 2.0 percent recorded over the same period last year.

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Windhoek East tackles unemployment

WINDHOEK- Khomas regional council’s Windhoek East constituency office has once again demonstrated that it remains at the forefront of driving self-employment in its community when owners of income generating projects recently received equipment or materials worth N$150 000 as part of efforts in fulfilment of government promise of assistance to the citizens in accordance with the policy of job creation strategies in all the constituencies.

Air Botswana, TAAG sign IATA gender diversity pledge

GENEVA – While the International Air Transport Association’s (IATA) 25by2025 campaign to address gender balance in civil aviation is gaining traction three months after its launch, with 59 airlines already having signed up, only two African airlines have committed to the initiative, namely Air Botswana and the Angolan airline, TAAG. 

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Grove Mall rebrands

WINDHOEK – The Grove Mall of Namibia has announced a step in a new direction, including making slight changes to its name, while sporting new colours.

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Structural problems haunt African airlines

GENEVA - Similar to 2019 performance, African airlines are again expected to make a massive collective loss of US$200 million (about N$3 billion) in 2020 mainly due to structural problems of high costs mostly as a result of government taxes and fees as well as low load factors.

NWR, Napwu sign revised recognition agreement

WINDHOEK - Namibia Wildlife Resorts (NWR) and Namibia Public Workers Union (Napwu) have announced the finalisation of their revised recognition agreement that follows the recent 2018/2019 wage negotiations that were successfully concluded by the two parties in September 2019.

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Fuel prices remain unchanged for December

WINDHOEK – The Ministry of Mines and Energy has confirmed that fuel pump prices for December will remain unchanged, as prices at the entry port of Walvis Bay remain stable at N$13.05 per litre for 95 Octane Unleaded Petrol and N$13.63 per litre for Diesel 50ppm. 

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WCCR hands over N$6 million dividend to government

WINDHOEK – The Windhoek Country Club Resort and Casino (WCCR) handed over N$6 million in preference shares to its shareholder, the government, through the ministries of public enterprise, as well as environment and tourism yesterday. The event took place at the Country Club grounds, where representatives from the government met the hotel’s management team. 

CHANGE graduates develop skills, gain meaningful employment

WINDHOEK - At the recent CHANGE training graduation, FNB Namibia, through the FirstRand Namibia Foundation, handed over financial support of N$370 000 to CHANGE, a programme which offers ex-offenders a chance to develop the skills to become productive members of society through meaningful employment. 

Capricorn contributes N$200 000 to drought relief

WINDHOEK - In response to the Namibian government’s state of emergency declaration on the current drought affecting the country, with no relief for farmers in the short term, Capricorn Group and Capricorn Asset Management has followed in the footsteps of the Group’s flagship brand Bank Windhoek by making a contribution of N$200 000 to the Dare to Care Drought Relief Fund.

Over 100 jobs created through Sanlam Innovation Works project

WINDHOEK – Sanlam, together with their project partner Namibia Business Innovation Institute (NBII), confirmed the winner of the 2019 Sanlam Innovation Works project. Linda P Ndakolo of Linda P Creations emerged as the overall winner of the 2019 competition and walked away with a cash prize of N$25 000 to further invest in her business.

Ohorongo Cement teams up with Carbo Namibia

WINDHOEK - In its drive to continue supporting government initiatives, as well as the trade ministry’s Growth at Home policy, Ohorongo Cement recently partnered with local entrepreneur, Carbo Namibia, which is a Namibian manufacturer and exporter of charcoal products. 

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PnP to dispose of used cooking oil through BEE

WINDHOEK - In support of its commitment to, and passion for environmental sustainability, Pick n Pay (PnP) Namibia, a subsidiary of the Ohlthaver & List (O&L) Group, recently signed a contract with BEE (Be Energy Efficient) Biofuel Manufacturing to safely dispose of all its used cooking oil (UCO). 

BAN to enhance stationery drive

WINDHOEK - The Banker Association of Namibia (BAN) will enhance their stationery drive on Friday, November 22, 2019, with a Shake-a-tin drive that will take place at various intersections in Windhoek.

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Fintech lets you say no to cash

Money is dangerous: it is bulky, smelly and dirty. Processing and getting the money from a shop, restaurant, café or any other place of business to the bank so it can be deposited can be a security nightmare, and it leaves business owners looking over their shoulder.

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NaCC refuses Namcor 50% import mandate exemption

WINDHOEK – The Namibia Competition Commission (NaCC) has refused an application by the Namibia Petroleum Corporation (NAMCOR) to grant exemption for a proposed 50 percent import mandate for the country’s fuel needs. NAMCOR has applied to NaCC for exemption from the provisions of the Competition Act – in respect of agreements arising from a proposal decision by the Minister of Mines and Energy to require 50 percent of all petroleum imports to be reserved for NAMCOR.

New industrial park coming to Walvis

WINDHOEK - Global Trade enabler DP World has signed an agreement with Namibia’s Nara Namib Free Economic Industrial Zone to develop an industrial park at Walvis Bay. The signing ceremony took place in Windhoek yesterday.

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Namport records a 19 percent increase of TEU’s for September

WINDHOEK - The Namibian Ports Authority (Namport) recorded a commendable increase of 19 percent of twenty-foot equivalent unit (TEU) containers shipped and 33 percent of TEU’s that landed at the Port of Walvis Bay in the month of September 2019 when compared to September 2018. These were the remarks of Namport’s Acting Chief Executive Officer, Kavin Harry, during the Annual Port Users function held in honour of the entity’s clientelé last week Friday.   

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MTN launches 4G at the coast

WINDHOEK - MTN Business Namibia has launched its LTE (4G) service at the coast, a development that now makes faster and reliable internet connectivity for home and office use in Swakopmund and Walvis Bay possible.

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Collaborative SME youth financing strategy unveiled

WINDHOEK – The finance ministry as well as that of sport, youth and national service, in conjunction with the Development Bank of Namibia (DBN) on Wednesday unveiled a N$138.5 million small and medium enterprise (SME) financing strategy, to commence on 1 December, specifically aimed at enabling the youth to start or expand their businesses. 

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We need to embrace the Cloud

There’s a lot of hype about the Cloud, however what comes to mind when you hear that your software will sit in the cloud, it sounds positively intangible and like a cloud it can fall apart anytime.

Trade ministry cautions of fake news

WINDHOEK - The Ministry of Industrialisation, Trade and SME Development (MITSMED) has cautioned members of the public and especially entrepreneurs of an ongoing online fake press release that purports to have been issued by the ministry. 

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CIF highlights necessity of Namibian Construction Council

WINDHOEK – One of the main topics scheduled to be discussed at the Construction Industries Federation (CIF) Construction Conference & AGM on  14 and 15 November  will be the establishment of a Namibian Construction Council, which is in line with the government’s commitment to have the council promulgated before the end of the 2019/2020 financial year.  

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Team Namibia supports local poultry industry

WINDHOEK - A barrage of squawks greets Albert Handunge every time he steps into his chicken coop. As the owner of Kona MH Supply cc, a poultry company based in Katutura, he beams. Seeing his chickens with their laid eggs reminds him of how, if supported locally, the poultry industry can boost job creation and ultimately eradicate poverty! 

Set and stick to your savings goals

WINDHOEK - World Savings Day or International Savings Day was established on 30 October 1924, during the first International Savings Bank Congress (World Society of Savings Banks) in Milan, Italy and was declared on the last day of the congress.

Namib Mills Group rejoins Team Namibia

WINDHOEK - Namibia’s current economic environment necessitates increased focus on supporting local businesses, in particular those that are manufacturing and producing for the local market, with the inherent intention to also export to regional and international markets other than effectively meeting the domestic demand. 

Illicit financial flows under spotlight

WINDHOEK - The Namibia University of Science and Technology supported by Bank Windhoek and Capricorn Group, last week hosted a two-day workshop for journalists and media students on the Investigation of Illicit Financial Flows and Money Laundering in Windhoek. 

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Air Namibia resumes flights to Luanda

WINDHOEK – Late last week, Air Namibia confirmed that after a temporary three-month suspension, it has re-introduced the Windhoek to Luanda route back to its schedule. The Windhoek to Luanda flights were scheduled to re-commence its Angolan operation yesterday.

Namibia launches intellectual property policy 

WINDHOEK - The Ministry of Industrialisation, Trade & SME Development, through the Business and Intellectual Property Authority, on behalf of the Government of Namibia, launched the first National Policy on Intellectual Property during a high-level breakfast engagement on Wednesday in Windhoek.   

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Malulu aims for sustainable production of local school uniforms

WINDHOEK - In some parts of the world, tailoring is regarded as pastime. Conversely, Fiina Malulu, considers tailoring to be an activity which may positively impact Namibia’s economy if her business concept is supported locally. Malulu, who is self-employed in the tailoring industry, is the owner of Fojarat Investment cc, a local business that designs, produces and repairs clothing for all Namibian age groups.

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MTC in Zurich to gear up for 5G

WINDHOEK - In preparation for the imminent arrival of 5G technologies in Sub-Saharan Africa, Mobile Telecommunications Limited Namibia (MTC) says that as a market leader and provider of next generation convergence network solutions it is committed to ensuring that it continues providing its 2.4 million customers with innovative technologies and services