• June 16th, 2019
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HAN gears up for tourism awards

WINDHOEK - The two-day Hospitality Association of Namibia (HAN) Tourism Congress and Tourism Awards Gala, which will take place on June 20 and 21, has received a major boost from Standard Bank,

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Banks warns of new scam technique

WINDHOEK - The Bankers Association of Namibia (BAN) is warning the public of the latest scam whereby fraudsters use a new technique to scam clients out of their money. “In the scam fraudsters call clients

Externalisation of money is a crime - Ndjago

Karibib Constituency Councillor, Melania Ndjago, is adamant that Namibia must introduce a clear and concise law such as the Electronic Communications and Transactions Act in line with the South African Act, noting that externalisation of money is a criminal act.

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CIF elated about local procurement directive

As the Namibian construction sector continues to find itself between a rock and a hard place, the Construction Industries Federation of Namibia (CIF) continues to advocate and engage with senior officials and government ministers to maintain efforts of raising awareness of the need to support the local construction sector. 

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SADC ministers push for Regional Priority Power Projects

Seated (from left) Fortune Chasi, Minister of Energy and Power Development, (Zimbabwe) and Mathews Nkhuwa, Minister of Energy (Zambia) signing while (standing) Tom Alweendo, Minister of Mines and Energy (Namibia), Alfeus !Naruseb, Minister of Water (Namibia) and Dr Tembinkosi Mhlongo, Deputy Executive Secretary for Regional Integration were among the witnesses. Photo: Contributed

MTC kickstarts listing process

WINDHOEK - Namibia’s leading ICT provider MTC has officially started its journey towards listing on the Namibian Stock Exchange (NSX). MTC will become the first state-owned enterprise to list on the NSX. 

Nedbank’s Pepper the Robot arrives for Career Expo

WINDHOEK - Nedbank Namibia will introduce Pepper, a humanoid robot, to learners at the Nedbank Career Expo which started Wednesday at the Windhoek Country Club and will end on Friday, 24 May 2019. Pepper is visiting Windhoek while taking a few days leave from his fulltime job as a client experience ambassador at Nedbank’s digital branch called the NZone in Sandton, Johannesburg. 

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Communicate with your creditors during tough times

There comes a time in any entrepreneur’s lifecycle when situations get tough. With the current persisting drought, combined with a challenging economic environment, entrepreneurs might find themselves faced with cash flow difficulties. As a result, this can negatively affect payments to creditors.

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Olafika raising a diamond generation

OKAHANDJA – The Olafika SME Development Mentorship Programme, a Namibian Diamond Trading Company (NDTC)-sponsored initiative, is building a Diamond Generation by placing more emphasis on developing small and medium enterprises (SMEs).

Airbus Africa lab equips airlines for expanding African market

WINDHOEK – One of the global leaders in aeronautics and space-related services, Airbus, last week held its annual African airlines business lab symposium in Zanzibar, bringing together airline industry experts and managers from carriers across the region, to position their businesses to take advantage of the rapidly expanding African market.

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Namibia aims for 80% local generation of power consumption by 2022

WINDHOEK - Without sufficient and affordable supply of electricity, crucial economic contributors, such as the mining sector, will not be able to operate optimally. For instance, of the more than 4 000 gigawatt hours (GWh) the country consumed in 2018, a significant portion, or just over 1 400 GWh, was consumed by the mining sector.  

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SAATM holds major potential for Africa’s economic transformation – IATA

WINDHOEK – Namibia has yet to sign up to the African Union’s Single Africa Air Transport Market (SAATM) project, after 28 countries on the continent have already signed up. According to the International Air Transport Association (IATA), a single air transport market for the continent, if implemented, gives Africa the potential for economic transformation and the association has urged the remaining 27 countries to follow suit. 

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Huawei awards Nust’s top performing IT students

WINDHOEK - Huawei Namibia yesterday rewarded the five top performing information technology students at the Namibia University of Science and Technology (Nust). The five students, Thomas Shigwedha, Carlos Sibalatani, Hainana Oletu, Jackson Vatileni and Pelema Abraham each received a 4G router and a custom diary from Huawei. 

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Aviation business tough for African airlines that make a loss per passenger

WINDHOEK – African airlines continue to struggle to turn a profit and as such airlines on the continent on average lose US$1.55 (almost N$22) for every passenger carried. This is in stark contrast to the rest of the global airline industry that has recorded an average profit per passenger of US$7.45 (about N$105) showing that air transport can indeed yield a return greater than cost of capital.

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Development Budget: Hardap allocated over N$284 million for regional development

WINDHOEK – The Hardap Region had been allocated N$284.7 million for the development budget during the 2019/2020 financial year. As tabled in the national budget by Minister of Finance Calle Schlettwein, in March this year, the Hardap Region’s development budget is expected to decrease slightly to just under N$260 million in the 2020/21 financial year, before rebounding to more than N$282.3 million in the 2021/22 financial year. 

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Sluggish economy keeps property prices subdued in early 2019

WINDHOEK – Residential property prices continued to contract during the first quarter of 2019, like they have done since 2018. This is according to the latest FNB House Price Index which recorded a contraction of one percent at the end of March 2019, compared to a contraction of 0.3 percent over the same period last year. Overall, the property market remains lacklustre, as the price index continues to hover in a negative territory. 

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Financial literacy training for offenders made possible 

WINDHOEK - The FirstRand Namibia Foundation Trust has handed over an amount of N$40 000 towards the Adonai Trust in Lüderitz. Rolandi Meyer, FNB Namibia’s Lüderitz Branch Administrator expressed her delight with the donation to be used towards financial literacy training for offenders from the Lüderitz and Keetmanshoop correctional services. 

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Don’t fear the revolution … embrace it!

In previous columns I have written about the Fourth Industrial Revolution and I will continue to do so, as I believe it provides the solution to uplift Namibia and Africa as a continent. We can fully embrace new technology, innovations, cloud

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Coetzee nominated as president of ISACA’s Windhoek Chapter 

WINDHOEK - ISACA, previously known as the Information Systems Audit and Control Association, has selected the managing director of Headway Consulting, Jan Coetzee, as their new president. At the recent Annual General Meeting (AGM) held in Windhoek, Coetzee was chosen to lead the Windhoek Chapter of this leading-edge global association.

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FNB Namibia merchants to accept UnionPay cards

WINDHOEK - FNB Namibia has confirmed that UnionPay cards are now accepted at all FNB Point of Sale terminals nationwide. UnionPay, also known as China UnionPay or by its abbreviation, CUP, is a Chinese financial services corporation headquartered in Shanghai, China, that provides bank card services and a card scheme in mainland China.

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Emerging managers create circles of excellence

WINDHOEK - Emerging managers are pivotal contributors to organisational performance and a vital link between frontline employees and the executive team in organisations as they are the backbone that sense and respond to various industry forces and drivers of a business to secure optimum performance.

Approved 2.5% bulk electricity tariff decrease unlikely to benefit consumers

WINDHOEK – Following an application from the national power utility, NamPower, the Electricity Control Board (ECB) approved a 2.5 percent tariff decrease, translating into an effective bulk tariff decrease from N$1.69 to N$ 1.65 per kilowatt-hour. However, the ECB has projected that consumer tariffs should remain at current levels based on inflationary impact as well as adjustments to distribution costs. 

Southern Africa oil discoveries vital for Namibia

SWAKOPMUND – Mines and Energy Minister Tom Alweendo says the discoveries of major oil reserves in Southern Africa will be of importance to Namibia, a country battling a volatile and challenging business environment, characterised by a slowdown in the economy. 

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NeXtGen Board goes the extra mile

On Friday, April 12, the newly established Capricorn Group NeXtGen Board supported the Capricorn Group’s brand promise of being Connectors of Positive Change by sowing positively into the lives of young children at the Family of Hope School in Havana, Katutura.

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Hollard donates N$440 000 to Pupkewitz Foundation

WINDHOEK - Hollard Insurance Company has always valued its partners which is evident in the recent donation of N$440 000 to the Pupkewitz Foundation, which shares the same ideology in regard to investing back into the community through identifying issues that desperately need attention.

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Air Namibia moves to fill leadership void

WINDHOEK – With only two of Air Namibia’s seven executive positions being held by substantive officials, the struggling airline’s Board of Directors has appointed new interim leadership to steer the airline out of the financial and human resource turbulence engulfing it.

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All systems go for 12th Luderitz Crayfish Festival

LÜDERITZ - Lüderitz Mayor and Chairperson of Crayfish Festival Board of Trustees, Hilaria Mukapuli, told New Era that the 12th Lüderitz Crayfish Festival will take place from the 25 April, 2019 until 30 May, 2019, at the Lüderitz Waterfront Harbour Square. The theme for this year’s festival is “Our Ocean Our Heritage”.

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Standard Bank award bursaries to four students 

WINDHOEK - Standard Bank recently awarded bursaries to four students studying Cyber Security, Forensic Science and Actuarial Science at the Namibia University of Science and Technology, the University of Free State and Stellenbosch University as part of its annual Bursary Programme.

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NWR goes digital

WINDHOEK - The business world has significantly changed since the internet went mainstream during the early 1990s. I can recall how challenging it was to access information about businesses before this period. At the same time, the past two decades have brought about significant changes within the digital landscape that have led to companies having to either adapt or fall behind.

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Repo rate: Economists weigh-in

WINDHOEK – The central bank has maintained the repo rate at 6.75%, in line with the expectations of economic gurus, although there are divergent views regarding the decision to leave the rate unchanged for almost two years while the country’s economy is teetering.

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Namcor assists Tsumkwe community 

WINDHOEK - The National Petroleum Corporation of Namibia (Namcor) recently handed over mattresses and educational items valued at N$319 000 to the Tsumkwe Primary and Secondary School, as well as the Tsumkwe community development and learning centre. 

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‘Namoysters’ highly sought-after

SWAKOPMUND- While Namibian oysters remain one of the most sought after culinary treats on the highly-competitive international mariculture markets, local producers are going at great lengths to meet the high demand.

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Nyae Nyae community opts for cash benefit

WINDHOEK - Benefit distributions in communal conservancies often comes in different forms, but mostly in cash. There has been criticism of this, and of the Namibian’s communal conservancies in general, but the Nyae Nyae Conservancy has benefitted significantly from the distribution of cash.

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OPINION: Start that conversation with your teenager

Financial literacy focuses on the knowledge and skills you need to make effective and informed money management decisions. Gaining the knowledge and developing the skills to become financially literate is a lifelong process that begins with something as simple as putting a few dollars in a piggy bank and evolves to more advanced subjects such as budgeting and risk.

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Development Budget: //Kharas Region allocated close to N$700 million for 2019/20

WINDHOEK – The total development budget for the //Kharas Region for the 2019/20 financial year, as tabled by Finance Minister Calle Schlettwein, on March 27, stands at N$695 994 000. Thereafter, during the remainder of the Medium-Term Expenditure Framework the region’s development budget is expected to reduce to N$682 441 000 during 2020/21 and then to N$640 024 000 for 2021/22. 

Team Namibia’s ‘Power of Your Mind’ inspires optimism

WINDHOEK - Team Namibia’s Team Talk event on Thursday last week, focusing on shaping the future with mental power,ue is very apt considering the stage Namibians find themselves in their personal and business lives. Team Namibia as an institution believes success can be achieved with optimism and a positive mindset. 

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Tucna not impressed with 2019/20 national budget

WINDHOEK – The Trade Union Congress of Namibia (Tucna) has voiced its disappointment in the 2019/20 national budget, particularly the government wage bill. According to Tucna’s Secretary General, Mahongora Kavihuha: “The crux of our argument is that for the minister to pass a budget that is progressive, it must still focus on leading the economy out of its current stagnation through increased wages for employees of the civil service.”

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Mining sector recorded highest sectoral growth in 2018

WINDHOEK - The Chamber of Mines in Namibia this week lauded the local mining sector as the best performing economic sector in 2018. This top performance was confirmed by the Preliminary National Accounts as released by the Namibia Statistics Agency, which indicated that the sector recorded a strong growth rate of 22 percent compared to 13.3 percent in 2017, which is more than any other economic sector.  

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NCCI confirms Mwiya’s appointment as substantive CEO

WINDHOEK - Emulating a precedent set by previous Boards of the Namibia Chamber of Commerce and Industry (NCCI), the Chamber’s directors, under the presidency of Sven Thieme, has appointed Charity Mwiya as the substantive Chief Executive Officer. Mwiya will head the NCCI’s secretariat over the coming five years.  

Standard Bank Namibia not to follow SA on branch closures

WINDHOEK – Standard Bank Namibia has confirmed that it has no plans to retrench staff or close down branches as is being done by Standard Bank South Africa, which is realigning its retail and business banking delivery model to the changing needs of customers amid rapid adoption of digital banking products and services.

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ACP’s efforts post-Cotonou must be economically sustainable - Tweya

WINDHOEK – Namibia has reaffirmed its commitment to the African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) and European Union (EU) partnership and says it will do all it can to honour and work toward the commitments embodied in the Cotonou Agreement and post-Cotonou when it expires in 2020. This was the message by Minister of Industrialisation, Trade and SME Development, Tjekero Tweya, when he spoke on Wednesday at the 37TH session of ACP-EU Joint Parliamentary Assembly that took place in the Bucharest, Romania. 

Opportunities abound to boost tourism sector

WINDHOEK - Chairman of the Namibia Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Windhoek, Martin Kaali Shipanga said discussions and input on the way forward for the tourism sector needs to be prioritised. According to Shipanga, Namibians should change the conversation surrounding the current economic situation, from one of looking for handouts to rather identify opportunities.

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NCCI Lüderitz branch elects new exco

Lüderitz – The Namibia Chamber of Commerce and Industry (NCCI) Lüderitz branch on Saturday re-elected Manu Namukomba as its chairperson, deputised by Inocencio Verde, during the annual general meeting (AGM) that took place at the Nest Hotel. 

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Tech advancements revive Kudu Gas to Power project

WINDHOEK – The Kudu Gas to Power project, which has in the past been hailed as the answer to Namibia’s electricity woes, has seen a revival by BW Kudu Limited, who says recent technological advancements as well as a consistent market for reliable economic energy makes the electricity project viable.

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Chapman takes over FNB Commercial 

WINDHOEK - Philip Chapman has been appointed as the new Executive Officer of FNB Namibia Commercial. In his new role Chapman will be responsible for FNB Commercial Banking, which includes, SME; Tourism; Agriculture; Franchise;

Counter-productive practices frustrate potential investors - Tweya

WINDHOEK - Minister of Industrialisation, Trade and SME Development Tjekero Tweya has cautioned that Namibians should do away with ancient and counter-productive practices that frustrates potential investors, inventors, innovators and anyone who has a brilliant idea that can make a positive difference in society and thereby catapult Namibia on a positive economic trajectory. 

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A bright future for coding kids

WINDHOEK - Three ladies have taken it upon themselves to teach children aged five to 19 years about coding. Namibia Optimist Investment cc (NOI), in collaboration with the Namibia Business Innovation Institute (NBII), has created a platform for young Namibians to grasp the basics of coding. 

International Cement Group interested in Schwenk Namibia

WINDHOEK – Singapore stock exchange listed International Cement Group (ICG) has expressed interest in acquiring a 100 percent stake in Schwenk Namibia (Pty) Ltd for US$104.4 million, which at the current exchange rate is slightly more than N$1.5 billion. Schwenk Namibia owns close to 70 percent of Ohorongo Cement and a 100 percent share of alternative fuel supplier, EFF. 

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Skorpion Zinc mine suffers N$22 million loss from strike

WINDHOEK - Skorpion Zinc (SZ) this weekend confirmed that its mining contractor, Basil Read, has reported the return to work by its employees who had been on strike. Basil Read is a business partner that was contracted to execute the Pit 112 push back project as a life extension-mining project for SZ. Without this life extension project, SZ would have ended its operations in 2017.  

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Nedbank profit increases 12% to N$340 million

WINDHOEK - Nedbank recently released its consolidated financial results for the year 2018, which shows that despite challenging economic and operating environment, the bank managed to grow positively with an increase in its overall financial position.

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IPPs to invest N$1.6 billion into electricity sector

WINDHOEK – It is estimated that 14 Independent Power Producers (IPPs) will in total invest approximately N$1.6 billion local and foreign direct investment into the electricity sector and ultimately into the Namibian economy. This is according to the Chairman of the Electricity Control Board (ECB), Gottlieb Hinda, who in the electricity regulator’s latest annual report noted that the 14 IPPs are expected to add 70MW to the national electricity grid.  

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Inkumbi sheds light on benefits of affordable housing

WINDHOEK - Speaking at the unveiling of 324 residential erven, five commercial and five institutional erven that will make up Orwetoveni Extension 12 in Otjiwarongo, Development Bank of Namibia (CEO) Martin Inkumbi highlighted often overlooked macro-economic benefits that support the case for acceleration of delivery of serviced land and affordable housing. 

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Capricorn Group’s 6-month operating profit up 11 percent to N$674 million

WINDHOEK – For the six months that ended on 31 December 2018, the Capricorn Investment Group Limited (Capricorn Group) increased it operating profit by 11.5 percent to N$674.3 million and group profit before tax increased by 8.5 percent to N$714.2 million. Also, the group delivered growth in headline earnings per share of 9.6 percent to 93.5 cents in the first half of this financial year as revealed in their interim results released on Friday, which follows fairly flat earnings over the last two years. 

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Broad money supply increases as banking liquidity decreases

WINDHOEK – Namibia’s annual growth in broad money supply (M2) increased at the end of January 2019. According to the latest Money and Statistics report by the Bank of Namibia (BoN), the 12-month growth in M2 increased to 7.6 percent at the end of January 2019, relative to 6.4 percent recorded at the end of December 2018.

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Budget needs to address civil service and budget deficit

WINDHOEK – With the date of the tabling of the national budget confirmed for Wednesday, 13 March, 2019, economists have pointed out the bloated wage bill, under-performing public enterprises, including a review of the public sector, and the budget deficit as some of the most crucial aspects that Finance Minister, Calle Schlettwein, needs to address. 

GIPF opens Eenhana office 

WINDHOEK - The Government Institutions Pension Fund (GIPF) yesterday officially opened its branch in Eenhana, situated in Onawa complex, Tobias Harelbeke Street. The opening of the branch was necessitated by the outcry for more accessible services in the Ohangwena Region and it is aligned to the Fund’s overall corporate strategy.  

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Erwin Tjipuka appointed as new FNB CEO

WINDHOEK - FirstRand Namibia Limited has confirmed the appointment of Erwin Tjipuka as FNB Namibia’s new Chief Executive Officer, effective April 01, 2019, while current CEO, Sarel van Zyl, will continue to serve in his role as CEO of the FirstRand Namibia Group. 

NWR awarded leading tourism company in Namibia

WINDHOEK - Namibia Wildlife Resorts (NWR) was yesterday presented with two Diamond Arrow awards as the leading organisation in tourism and conservation enhancement in Namibia as well as the leading tourism company in the country. The awards were received from PMR.africa. 

Navigating your finances as a couple

February may be the month of love, but we all know financial differences can place a huge strain on any relationship. Fortunately, if you approach your finances together and give them careful thought, such difficulties can be avoided.

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Enabling finance for SOEs fills development gaps

WINDHOEK - Development Bank of Namibia (DBN) Head of Marketing and Corporate Communication, Jerome Mutumba, says state-owned enterprises (SOEs) can benefit from purposeful finance to enable them to fulfill their mandates to develop Namibia using corporate finance.

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NWR drops rates by 75% 

WINDHOEK - With the current prevailing economic conditions, Namibia Wildlife Resorts (NWR) is once again offering a 75 percent discount at its establishments during the month of March.

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Let your will be done

WINDHOEK - When American music icon Prince passed away in April 2016 many were shocked to learn that he had no will for his estate, which was valued at around US$200 million by Forbes Magazine. For almost three years after his death his estate was still in limbo.

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NWR embraces changing tourism landscape

WINDHOEK - Namibia Wildlife Resorts (NWR) has for the past few years focused its efforts on offering the domestic and international markets the only opportunity to stay within Namibia’s national parks. Over time, this has provided guests with the chance to enjoy an early morning game drive or experience a breath-taking sunset at Sossusvlei.

Software as a Service…at your service

Running a small business, or being a lawyer, plumber, architect, doctor or whatever form of self-employment, you find yourself in, you are bound to use a computer. Whether it is an Apple or PC or a portable device, software, back-up, apps and

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Ekandjo receives 100 Global HR Heroes award

WINDHOEK - MTC’s Chief Human Capital & Corporate Affairs Officer and the Founder and President of the Institute of People Management of Namibia, Tim Ekandjo, was recently awarded the “100 Global HR Heroes Award” at the 27th World HRD Congress. The World HRD Congress took place from the 15 to 17 February at Taj Lands Mumbai and was attended by over 1300+ global leaders from various continents including Asia, Africa and USA.  

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Sanlam “Bag to School” winners receive prizes

WINDHOEK – Last Friday, the enthusiastic young competition winners and their parents gathered at the Sanlam Investments office in Windhoek to receive their prizes handed to them by Tega Shiimi ya Shiimi, CEO of Sanlam Investments Namibia. Fifty winners located across Namibia each received a school bag filled with stationeries. 

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CIF calls for establishment of National Construction Council

WINDHOEK – The Construction Industries Federation of Namibia (CIF) is optimistic that lawmakers will focus on ensuring better opportunities for the Namibian construction sector and will explicitly address the extent of foreign involvement in the industry, which the federation says is currently to the detriment of Namibian contractors. This call by the CIF comes in the wake of the opening Parliament last week and expressly calls for legislation of a National Construction Council. 

FNB leading the way in digital banking adoption

WINDHOEK - FNB says its customers are increasingly embracing digital banking channels in order to bank in a convenient and affordable manner. The bank revealed that over the last year the highest number of customers that migrated to the FNB Banking App, Online Banking and Cellphone banking for day-to-day banking were recorded. 

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FNB Far North gives back

WINDHOEK – First National Bank’s Far North Cluster recently handed over sanitary pads to disadvantaged girls in various schools, as well as refuse bins to various northern towns.  

Investors keen to set up charcoal plant to add value to “black gold”

WINDHOEK - In line with the Minister of Industrialisation, Trade and SME Development, Tjekero Tweya’s recent observation that the charcoal industry must be reformed to add more value locally, AM Consulting in Windhoek say they have investors who are looking for a farm of between 5 000 to 10 000 hectares and whose owner is interested in de-bushing/bush thinning.

AfDB to release African economic outlook this week

WINDHOEK - The African Development Bank is expected to present the 2019 edition of its flagship African Economic Outlook (AEO) report on the sidelines of the 32nd Ordinary Session of the Assembly of the African Union in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, on Friday, February 8, 2019. The African Economic Outlook 2019 will be available in English, French and Portuguese.

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Fishing and transport to benefit mostly from stable fuel prices

WINDHOEK – Two consecutive and substantial fuel price decreases in December 2018 and January 2019, combined with stable prices confirmed by the Ministry of Mines and Energy for February 2019, bring relief to not only motorists, but to all businesses and consumers at a time when the economy is still not gaining much momentum. 

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Outstanding Roads Authority millions needed for maintenance and new roads

WINDHOEK – The Roads Authority (RA) yesterday said that more than N$250 million owed to Namibia Traffic Information System (NaTIS) does not have a direct impact on its operations but that all the collected outstanding fees will be channelled towards maintaining the country’s road network and the construction of new roads. This funding will be done via the Road Fund Administration, which falls under the Ministry of Finance.

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How to ensure your donation has maximum impact

WINDHOEK - “Over the past decade and even before that, sponsorships, donations and CSI initiatives have undergone dramatic changes and this philanthropy landscape keeps on changing. Today, more than ever, CSI managers and donors identify with a wide range of social problems and understand the importance of solving and prioritising strategic

GIPF members urged to update beneficiary nomination forms

WINDHOEK - The Government Institutions Pension Fund (GIPF) has urged all members to visit their Human Resource officers from their respective institutions, to update their Beneficiary Nomination forms. Members must ensure that the names and date of births of their dependants (beneficiaries) and nominees accurately appear on the forms as they reflect on their national documents.

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Are we safe and secure?

The world used to be a dangerous place. From roaming animals to unsafe food, untested products and cars without seatbelts or hardly any safety features at all. Riding motorbikes without a helmet was the most natural thing and most of us reading this can remember riding our bicycles without a helmet. You never see a kid without a helmet on a bike anymore.

Air Namibia increases domestic and regional flights

WINDHOEK - Air Namibia has confirmed schedule changes and frequency increases to a number of flights effective March 30, in an effort to improve its service offering on domestic and some regional routes. The national airline will increase capacity on routes where it often has high levels of spillage and is also introducing flights on days of  the week most suited to clients’ requirements. 

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Targeted action still needed despite expected moderate growth - Calle

WINDHOEK – After surviving negative economic growth for the last two years, the Minister of Finance expects the worst effects of the recession to be over but has cautioned that the prolonged slump still calls call for comprehensive and targeted actions by both government and the private sector despite the expectation of moderate growth in the Namibian economy this year. 

Commission warns of monopoly in automotive industry

WINDHOEK – Following a 2018 study of the local automotive industry, the Namibian Competition Commission (NaCC) says the biggest concerns in respect of competition and market structure were found in the application of franchising in the vehicle retail market, more specifically the market for new vehicle sales, whereby one company is given exclusive rights by the franchisor to sell a certain brand in the entire country.

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Calle clamps down on corruption

WINDHOEK – During 2018, the Ministry of Finance uncovered more corruption cases within its corridors compared to the previous year. Addressing his staff yesterday, Minister of Finance, Calle Schlettwein, revealed that while only six corruption cases were exposed in 2017/18, this year, the figure increased to more than double with 15 corruption cases discovered. 

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Ugly pay spat erupts between Namibian and Italian companies

WINDHOEK – An ugly spat between a local company, Khomas Civil Construction (KCC), and an Italian company called the Enertronica Group (EG), is brewing as accusations and counter-accusations are being thrown about by the two entities. EG, last year erected a five-Megawatt solar power plant in the Erongo Region for which it employed KCC to complete specific construction work. 

Low growth expected for 2019 – McGregor

WINDHOEK – While the Namibian economy, which is still reeling from the effects of a prolonged recession, is expected to eventually return to growth sometime during the course of 2019, a local economist has cautioned that any rebound into positive territory will still be low growth of less than one percent. In fact, the growth expectation is for a mere 0.8 percent, according to Robert McGregor an economist at Cirrus Capital (Pty) Ltd. 

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Gearing up for the 2021 Census

The Namibia Statistics Agency, as we should all know by now, is the central statistics repository of the state and hence responsible for the collection, production, dissemination and analysis of official statistics. What drives the Agency is the need to ensure that the statistics produced are relevant, accurate, reliable and timely in order to influence decision and policy making. 

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Africa’s top 10 tech start-ups selected for accelerator programme

WINDHOEK - Airbus and the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) have announced the top 10 African tech start-ups that will take part in the latest Airbus Bizlab #Africa4Future accelerator programme. They were selected after an open public pitch event in front of experts, potential investors, the media and other stakeholders in Kenya’s capital city. 

No passengers for Nam transport to Zim following fuel protests

WINDHOEK – Public transportation, both via road and air, is still readily available from Namibia to Zimbabwe despite the political and civil unrest that flared up in the southern African nation this week. However, while transportation companies say they are ready to drive and fly, most of the buses destined for Zimbabwe are practically empty and flights under-booked as travellers seem to be waiting for the unrest to subside before travelling to the troubled country. 

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NWR makes travelling affordable

WINDHOEK - Quite often the chance to travel is dismissed once one considers the costs associated with it. When an individual considers visiting a new place, the first question that comes to mind is; How expensive is it going to be?

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Back-to-school financial stress

WINDHOEK – Most parents know that back-to-school is one of the most expensive times of the year, but it is estimated only half of parents make an effort to establish a back to school budget. Parents are well aware that that back-to-school shopping poses a financial burden on their families. A whopping percentage of parents spoken to claim that getting kids ready for a new year of classes leaves them with serious anxiety and shopping for necessary school items is the worst cause.

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Calamitous ceiling collapse at Country Club caused by strong winds

WINDHOEK – A disastrous ceiling collapse on Tuesday at the entrance of the Windhoek Country Club Resort and Casino (WCCR) has been attributed to strong winds. Fortunately, no staff members or guests were injured when the entire ceiling of the VIP drop-off area came loose and crashed onto the floor of the entrance at around 14h00.

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Eiseb succeeds pioneering Ndjaba as NDTC’s new CEO

WINDHOEK - The Namibia Diamond Trading Company (NDTC) Board of Directors have confirmed the retirement of Shihaleni Ellis Ndjaba, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of NDTC, who retired at the end of December 2018, following 11 years of dedicated service to the company. He is succeeded by Brent Eiseb, who previously served at strategic level as Senior Manager, Sales & Marketing. Eiseb’s appointment is effective from January 01, 2019.

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Instill a saving culture into your children

WINDHOEK – Parents play a key role in the financial literacy of children. As they prepare their children for the New Year’s first school semester, the subject of money between the parent and the child will present itself one way or another. For a parent, this should be an opportunity to teach their children the importance of saving money for a brighter financial future.

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DBN advises to borrow wisely for effective assets and operations

WINDHOEK - Jerome Mutumba, Development Bank of Namibia (DBN) Head of Marketing and Corporate Communication, says that as the economy begins to improve entrepreneurs will find greater confidence to establish SMEs, and existing SMEs will seek finance to grow. However, he says, confidence should walk hand in hand with responsible borrowing.

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Africa still leading the way on drone usage - IATA

GENEVA – Developments within the drone or Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) industry, is moving at a rapid pace in multiple directions as service providers scramble to provide low altitude, high altitude, recreational and commercial drone services. And, according to the Head of Cargo Transformation at the International Air Transport Association (IATA), Celine Hourcade, Africa continues to lead the way in using drones to deliver goods. 

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Increased volumes give buyers more traction in housing market

WINDHOEK - “After enduring some of the highest property price appreciation in the world, the tide has turned, with buyers firmly in the driving seat and dictating terms as increased volumes have provided prospective buyers with much needed options,” says Namene Kalili, FirstRand Namibia Group Economist. 

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African airlines to make N$4.2 billion loss in 2019

GENEVA - The International Air Transport Association (IATA) forecasts that African airlines are to make a loss of more than N$4.2 billion (US$300 million) in 2019, which is in stark contrast to the rest of the global airline industry that is anticipated to report a net profit of close to half a trillion Namibia dollars (US$35.5 billion) next year. 

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Global aviation approaching infrastructure crisis - IATA

GENEVA - It is not only Namibia or the Hosea Kutako International Airport that is currently experiencing a major aviation infrastructure challenge as the International Air Transport Association (IATA) yesterday revealed that the industry, globally, is approaching an infrastructure crisis. 

Capricorn’s stable outlook credit rating confirmed by GCR

WINDHOEK - Global Credit Ratings (GCR) has affirmed the national scale ratings assigned to Capricorn Investment Group Limited and Bank Windhoek Limited of AA (NA) and A1+(NA) in the long-term and short-term respectively; with the outlook accorded as stable. Furthermore, Global Credit Ratings has affirmed the long-term South African national scale (Rand) issuer rating of A+(ZA) assigned to Bank Windhoek Limited; with the outlook also accorded as stable.

Bank Windhoek issues first Green Bond

Bank Windhoek reached a milestone this week Wednesday when it announced the successful issuance of Namibia’s first Green Bond. This achievement positions Bank Windhoek as the first local commercial bank to issue a Green Bond not only domestically but across the Southern African region. 

Central bank leaves repo rate unchanged at 6.75%

The Bank of Namibia’s Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) yesterday revealed that the Repo rate, the rate at which commercial banks borrow from the central bank which in turn determines interest rates, has been left unchanged at 6.75 percent. The MPC said the rate remains appropriate to maintain the one-to-one link between the Namibia Dollar and the South African Rand, while supporting domestic economic growth.

New fresh Bahri season set to increase output

WINDHOEK - Desert Fruit Namibia is one of only a handful of known producers of Fresh Bahri Dates in the Southern Hemisphere, and these dates, while relatively unknown in Europe and the US, remain a sought-after delicacy in the Middle East, with rising demand from the Muslim and Asian markets. 

Namibia scoops two wins at startup awards

WINDHOEK - Out of the 15 categories, Namibia brought home two awards from the recent Southern Africa Startup Awards (SASAwards), which was held for the first time to celebrate and recognise the spirit of innovation and achievement in the startup ecosystem in the SADC region. SASA Namibia was represented by 11 regional winners from nine startups at the SASAwards grand finale that took place on 21 and 22 November 2018 in Johannesburg, South Africa.

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NWR looks to Ghana to boost local tourism

WINDHOEK - Namibia Wildlife Resorts (NWR) recently returned from marketing and networking session in Ghana, aimed at luring Ghanaian visitors to their resorts. The event took place on November 30, 2018 in conjunction with Air Namibia’s local representative who gave attendees the benefits of flying with Air Namibia. 

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NamPower pays over N$60m dividend to government

WINDHOEK – NamPower has declared a dividend of N$60.7 million to its shareholder, the government yesterday. The dividend was approved at the electricity utility’s most recent annual general meeting where the NamPower board of directors decided to declare the dividend for the financial year ended June 30, 2018.

Board appointed at revenue agency’s D-day draws closer

WINDHOEK – The much-awaited operationalisation of the Namibia Revenue Agency (Namra) continued to gain momentum yesterday. With the announcement of its Board of Directors before the semi-autonomous agency, it is scheduled to commence at the beginning of March 2019. Namra was established at the end of 2017 with the promulgation of the Namibia Revenue Agency Act after Cabinet approval in 2013, and will replace the current Inland Revenue Department in the Ministry of Finance. 

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Schlettwein announces PPP committee members

WINDHOEK – The Public Private Partnership (PPP) Committee, which will play a central role in the monitoring, evaluation, and implementation of PPPs, was yesterday announced by Finance Minister, Calle Schlettwein. Economic analysts believe that PPPs could provide amicable solutions to infrastructure development and economic growth in the domestic economy that is struggling to rebound from a recession. The main purpose of PPPs is to leverage private capital for national infrastructure developments. 

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Namibia’s financial capability increased by 10%

WINDHOEK - The Namibia Financial Capability Survey results were recently released at the Bank of Namibia, indicating that the average overall Namibia Financial Capability Survey for 2017 was 52.94 percent, which is a 10 percent increase, compared to 2013. The survey also showed that financial knowledge increased with 0.07 percent, and financial behaviour with 18.51 percent.

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Local procurement forum slated for next week

WINDHOEK – The Namibia University of Science and Technology (Nust), in conjunction with Engineers Without Borders Canada – Mining Shared Value (EWB-MSV), and the Canadian International Resources and Development Institute (CIRDI) is scheduled to host a forum on supporting effective mining local procurement strategies and best practices. The forum is slated for next week Wednesday at the NUST Hotel School in Windhoek. 

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Job losses in mining sector concerns Alweendo

WINDHOEK – Minister of Mines and Energy, Tom Alweendo, is concerned about recent job losses within the mining sector and has called on Namibian mining executives to brainstorm on how to retain employment for Namibians as well as to create prospects for unemployed graduates to benefit from the country’s extractive resources. Alweendo expressed his concern during a briefing with mining industry executives in Windhoek yesterday. 

Navachab gets new managing director

SWAKOPMUND - QKR Cooperation Limited has appointed George Botshiwe as the new Managing Director of the QKR Namibia Navachab Gold Mine, effective as of November 01, 2018. Botshiwe replaces Johan Coetzee who served as the managing director of the mine for the past five years.

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FirstRand Namibia and CHANGE help ex-offenders

WINDHOEK - The FirstRand Namibia Foundation Trust re-iterated its financial commitment and pledged more than N$364 000 to CHANGE, highlighting the continued commitment towards education and skills development programmes. Amongst its various courses, CHANGE provides a fashion design and tailoring programme, as well as business training.

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Epangelo wants to increase government’s 3% share in Rossing Uranium

WINDHOEK – Epangelo Mining, the State-owned mining company established in 2008 to occupy a significant position in major commodity businesses, inclusive of uranium, has confirmed that while it was not offered a first-right of refusal for the Rio Tinto shares in Rössing Uranium, because it is not a direct shareholder in the mine, it is in fact interested in increasing government’s three percent stake in Rössing Uranium. CEO of Epangelo Mining, Eliphas Hawala, yesterday explained to New Era that only the government is entitled to receive a first right to refusal offer because government is a direct shareholder in the mine.

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How to beat the Janu-worry blues

WINDHOEK - The festive season is a time of high risk for impulse spending – buying something because you see it, not because you need it. In light of Namibia’s economic downturn, fostering healthy spending behaviour has been top of mind for their citizens. Martha Murorua, Executive Officer for Consumer Banking at FNB Namibia, shares her thoughts.

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Own Your Zula festival attracts Gobabis entrepreneurs

WINDHOEK - After the tremendous success of the 2018 Start-Up Festival in Windhoek, the Gobabis Municipality in cooperation with the Financial Literacy Initiative hosted a Micro Business Start-up Festival in Gobabis this past weekend (24 November 2018) in the Freedom Square Informal Settlement.

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Young entrepreneur encourages youth to read

WINDHOEK – Vna Native Foods, the relatively young business that last week walked away with the one-million-dollar prize at the Development Bank of Namibia’s 2018 Innovation Awards, is determined to become a household brand in the country.

MTC and Huawei’s LTE solution doubles network capacity

WINDHOEK - MTC Namibia partnered with Huawei to put the 4T6S solution into large-scale commercial use. The area selected to benefit from this solution is the central business district of Windhoek. This move is a conscious decision by MTC to efficiently improve network capacity and overall user experience while helping to slash site power consumption and total cost of operation. 

NWR reflects on 2018 as it continues to cut costs

WINDHOEK – As the year is quickly nearing its  end, Namibia Wildlife Resorts (NWR) is reflecting on some of the progress it made in 2018. NWR emphasises that the economic challenges facing the country played a significant role in how the company fared but notes that these trying times show how resilient the company is.

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The benefits of sustainable investments

In many first world economies, the effects of global warming continue to manifest as a business reality. In response to this crisis, the Namibian banking sector, in support of the Millennium Development Goals, is mandated to play a vital role in accelerating the local market’s transition to a lower-carbon energy future. 

Prosperity enhances insurance product range

WINDHOEK - The Prosperity Group recently hosted brokers, shareholders, senior management and the media at the new San Karros Daan Viljoen Mountain View venue. The aim of the cocktail event was to showcase the new conference and entertainment venue within the Daan Viljoen Park, while at the same time introducing the Prosperity Lifecare Insurance product range for 2019, with some new additions and tweaks. 

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MTC reaches milestone of 2.5 million active subscribers

 WINDHOEK - Mobile Telecommunications Company (MTC) has announced that as of  November 9, 2018 it has reached the 2.5 million active subscribers mark on its books. This is quite a remarkable feat considering the Namibian Statistics Agency estimates that the entire Namibian population is 2.413 million people. MTC’s calculation is based on an active subscriber’s definition by global industry standards, meaning that an active SIM subscriber implies that the SIM card should have been active in the last three months to be defined as such. An inactive SIM card less than three months is not considered be as an active SIM card. 

DPO receives payment facilitator licence in Namibia

WINDHOEK – Direct Pay Online (DPO) Group, one of the leading online payments service provider in Africa, announced that it obtained a Payment Facilitator licence from the Payments Association of Namibia (PAN) at the end of September. The licence, which took them about a year to secure, enables the DPO Group to roll out its payment services directly to Namibian businesses and entrepreneurs.

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Capricorn Group equips management

WINDHOEK - Capricorn Group, Bank Windhoek’s holding company, recently launched its seven month Management Development Programme (MDP), in partnership with the University of Stellenbosch Business School (USB).

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SSC avails N$2 million for NUST to train Keetmanshoop youth

WINDHOEK - A service level agreement signed this week between the Namibia University of Science and Technology (NUST) and the Social Security Commission (SSC) will facilitate skills training in gemology, jewellery design and entrepreneurship for the country’s unemployed youth.  The agreement, for which N$2 million has been reserved by SSC, was signed on Tuesday by Dr Tjama Tjivikua, NUST vice-chancellor (pro tem), and SSC chief executive officer, Milka Mungunda. 

Educated consumers more aware of their rights - Namfisa

WINDHOEK – Consumers within the financial services sphere are becoming more and more educated particularly with regard to knowing and understanding their rights as customers. This, according to the Namibia Financial Institutions Supervisory Authority (Namfisa), is evident from the number of consumer complaints that have been steadily increasing on an annual basis. 

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Namibia’s Green clinches potential deals at AfricaCom Expo

CAPE TOWN – A Namibian corporate Information Communication Technology (ICT) solutions provider, Green Enterprise Solutions, also known as Green, last week clinched significant potential deals at the just ended AfricaCom Expo held at the Cape Town International Convention Centre (CTICC). This is according to the company’s Marketing and Communication Coordinator, Agnes Nyirenda.  

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PowerCom to begin construction of new tower at Kuisebmond

WINDHOEK - PowerCom Pty Ltd is currently in the process of constructing a new 30m Lattice tower at Kuisebmond which will be fully commissioned by January 2019 as part of its commitment to infrastructure investment. Demand for tower space has continued to grow in Kuisebmond, as well as across Namibia. The tower infrastructure company is responding to these demands and beginning their 2019 construction schedule in Kuisebmond.  

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Huawei Launches ICT Talent Ecosystem Program in Sub-Sahara Africa

CAPE TOWN –There is critical shortage of skilled ICT professionals in Sub-Saharan Africa, which hampers the growth of a thriving ICT sector, which underpins economic growth.  To address this skills shortage, Huawei launched an ICT Talent Ecosystem Programme in Sub-Saharan Africa at Africacom 2018 - the largest telecommunications event in Africa, being held Cape Town. 

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Vivo Energy focusses on HSSE importance

WINDHOEK - Vivo Energy, the market-leading company that distribute and markets Shell branded fuels and lubricants in Africa, held its annual Safety Day on Thursday. The Safety Day was an opportunity for all parties at Vivo Energy to refocus on the importance of Health, Safety, and Security & Environment (HSSE). 

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Growing concern over Angolan fuel smuggling at Oshikango

WINDHOEK - The Ministry of Mines and Energy says it has noticed with growing concern the illegal activities taking place at the Oshikango border post in the Ohangwena Region where large amounts of illegal fuel are smuggled into the country for resale. Angolan petrol sells for just over N$6 per litre and diesel for about N$7.30 per litre compared to well over N$14 per litre in Namibia. 

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Slowdown in housing prices brings inflation down slightly

WINDHOEK - The Namibia Statistics Agency’s (NSA’s) latest Consumer Price Index and inflation rate estimates for the month of October 2018 indicate that the annual inflation rate slowed to 5.1 percent compared to 5.2 percent recorded in October 2017, registering a decrease of 0.1 percentage points. Based    on October 2018 price movements, the monthly inflation rate stood at 0.4 percent compared to 0.8 percent registered a month earlier. 

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Otavi Steel plant signs with Nedbank for N$2.7 billion project

WINDHOEK - Nedbank Namibia Corporate and Investment Banking (CIB) and Noric Otavi Steel Processing (Pty) Ltd this week signed an agreement for Nedbank to act as the lead arranger for the Otavi Steel Manufacturing Plant project in Otavi. According to the agreement, Nedbank will assist with the financial structuring of the project and facilitate the raising of both quasi-equity and debt capital for the N$2.7 billion project.

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Mungunda bags IPM MD of the Year 

WINDHOEK - Vetumbuavi Mungunda, the Managing Director of Standard Bank Namibia, was awarded with the Institute of People Management’s MD of the Year Award at its recently concluded IPM Excellence Gala Dinner Awards. The glamorous event took place at Hilton Hotel in front of a packed audience on Tuesday.

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NWR pays N$60 million of DBN loan

WINDHOEK - Namibia Wildlife Resorts (NWR) has to date paid N$60 million in interest to the Development Bank of Namibia (DBN), as interest on the N$120 million loan the company borrowed in 2006, Managing Director Zelna Hengari said.

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Eldorado SS receives 10 computers

WINDHOEK - Last week the FirstRand Namibia Foundation Trust handed over 10 refurbished computers to the Eldorado Secondary School.  Principal Salwa Khedr said most of the computers will be used to increase learner intake in the ‘office practice’ subject, while two will be used in the school library. 

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Afrox Leadership Academy aims to equip youth with necessary skills 

WINDHOEK - The inaugural Afrox Leadership Academy programme culminated in a gala dinner attended by First Lady Monica Geingos, in Windhoek on Friday, November 9, at Safari Hotel. The Afrox Leadership Academy was birthed out of the desire by the management of Afrox Namibia to identify the best possible method for intervention in skills development and poverty eradication in Namibia.

Union gets strike approval after wage deadlock with NWR 

WINDHOEK – Namibia Wildlife Resorts (NWR) and Namibia Public Workers Union (Napwu) have reached a deadlock regarding the proposed salary increment for its employees. The deadlock has resulted in Napwu receiving a certificate of unresolved dispute that provides them with the mandate to go on strike after the rules of engagement are agreed between the two parties.

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Fishing industry applauds TACs as it awaits new fishing rights

WINDHOEK – The Confederation of Namibian Fishing Associations has welcomed the Cabinet approved Total Allowable Catch (TAC) for hake of 154 000 metric tons for the 2018/2019 fishing season, which begins November 1 and ends on September 30, 2019. According to chairman of the confederation, Matti Amukwa, the TAC, which is recommended by fisheries scientists in the Ministry of Fisheries and Marine Resources, is much like an individual’s salary in that you can get by what you have but you would always welcome more. 

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Securing your legacy themes Nedbank Private Wealth launch

WINDHOEK - Using wealth to bring about a positive change to the world as well as leaving behind a legacy for your family and the next generation, were the underlining themes of the Nedbank Namibia Private Wealth official launch which took place on Wednesday, 7 November at the Am Weinberg Estate in Klein Windhoek.

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Namibia can become self-sufficient in terms of energy production

This week New Era’s Senior Business Reporter, Edgar Brandt (EB), interviewed the Business Development Manager of Finnish energy firm, Wärtsilä, Mark Zoeters (MZ) who formed part of a Finnish business delegation that recently visited Namibia for a business seminar themed ‘Finland World Ideas’. The seminar was organised by the Finnish embassy.

NamPost inaugurates new warehouse

WINDHOEK - “I could not wish for more; the infrastructure is ready and it is now up to NamPost to utilize it maximally and create efficiencies that impact positively on both the customer and the staff of NamPost.” These sentiments were expressed by Nangula Hamunyela, chairperson of the Namibia Post Limited Board, when he officially inaugurated NamPost’s new courier warehouse on Wednesday. 

Stay vigilant and bank safely online

WINDHOEK - Since the introduction of digital channels, be it on a PC or mobile phone, fraudsters have targeted unsuspecting users of these channels. This ranges from incidents related to phishing, card swopping, skimming, ATM fraud, and identity theft, 419 scams and sim swopping.

Global oil prices and weakening Nam Dollar push fuel up again

WINDHOEK  – Motorists will have to brace themselves again on Wednesday this week when the recent warnings by economists that the fuel prices will continue to rise will become reality. Minister of Mines and Energy. Tom Alweendo, confirmed in a statement yesterday that Petrol will increase by 50 cents a litre while all grades of Diesel will go up by 70 cents a litre. 

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Etosha Fishing wins big at National Quality Awards

WINDHOEK - Etosha Fishing Corporation asserted its position as a leading producer of quality canned fish products at the 6th Annual National Quality Awards hosted by the Namibian Standards Institution (NSI) in October. The company once again received top honours by winning three of the five large enterprise categories, including Company of the Year, Exporter of the Year and Product of the Year, a feat it managed in both 2015 and 2017. 

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Namibia down one place to 107 in WB’s Doing Business Report

WINDHOEK - The World Bank’s (WB) Doing Business Report 2019, released at the end of October 2018, shows Namibia dropped one rank from 106 to 107 out of a total of 190 countries. The report ranks Namibia as 7th out of 14-member states of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) just like last year. However, while five SADC member states improved the ranking by up to five places (Mauritius) and one country maintained the ranking (South Africa), most SADC countries dropped by up to seven places (Tanzania).  

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Minimum wage for domestic workers up by 4.15%

WINDHOEK – The ministry of labour has announced new minimum wages for domestic workers, which came into effect on October 1, 2018. The new wages for domestic workers were determined by a one percent increase coupled with the average inflation rate on basic items. 

Stage is set for lower housing demand as residential market struggles continue

WINDHOEK - In the latest housing index by FNB Namibia, Group Economist Namene Kalili concluded that the stage has been set for lower housing demand. “This can be based on economic growth stagnating, consumer confidence waning, increased affordable housing delivery, increased land delivery, rising interest rates, rising home ownership costs and the economy still shedding jobs.”