Business

Worlds in collision

Individuals are “worlds” set on what is often a collision course. In a previous post I wrote about the “diversity of individuals”, where the thought of such potential “collisions” was already latently present. In the last few days I have come across a number of things that have impressed upon me the realisation that the…

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Voices from the platinum belt victory

Text by Gillian Schutte Films by Sipho Singiswa The stadium in Phokeng outside Rustenberg exploded in jubilation when the end of the longest strike in South African history was announced on June 23. Men and women waved their arms victoriously in the air and resounding ululations and cheering reverberated as a great burden of domestic…

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How to save capitalism from the capitalists

It is always a bit surprising to hear an economist described as a “rock star” in the media, but Thomas Piketty has been collecting this accolade in spades since the publication of his runaway bestseller, Capital in the Twenty-First Century. It surely says something interesting about our times that this 700-page tome packed with dense…

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A case for rethinking Africa’s development

Development is an indispensable aspect of socio-economic progress and civilisation — development should be thought of far more than just economic growth. As Thandika Mkandawire has put it, the search for development has become so consuming that it, more or less, assumes the form of an ideology to which post-colonial African leaders subscribed to under…

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How much money is enough?

A R12 500 a month salary, much discussed in business, economic and political circles at present, is the wage fought for by striking platinum miners in the longest and most damaging strike in our country’s history. The recent agreement puts that figure within sight. I couldn’t live on R12 500, and I’m sure most readers on this…

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Can the new administration inspire investor confidence?

The latest gross domestic product numbers have confirmed that our economy is experiencing very serious strains and the ongoing platinum miners’ strike is a major contributor to the negative trend. At the heart of the problem is the uncomfortable reality that the majority of the unemployed are unskilled and yet we are progressively moving towards…

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Christo Wiese’s ‘Richest South African’ acceptance speech

The collective wealth of the top 20 grew 8.6% over the previous year and saw Shoprite’s Christo Wiese knocking mining magnate Patrice Motsepe off his perch as the richest South African. — Times Live Striking platinum miners have taken to the road, touring the country in the hope of winning over public opinion towards their…

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The mining multinationals in Mozambique: Is it a win-win situation?

By Antonio Macheve Jr The generic stories of multinational companies extracting natural resources from poor resource-rich countries often maintain a strong emphasis on exploitation of cheap labour, environmental degradation, poor local economic and social development, and unresponsive corporate social responsibility policies as the most direct effects of such operations on the population, particularly around the…

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The new shock doctrine: ‘Doing Business’ with the World Bank

One of the problems with neoliberal economic policy is that it’s tough to get countries to agree to it; especially democratic ones. It has often required quite extreme measures, such as invasion — the classic example being the US-backed coup against Chile’s democratically elected president — or debt bondage and structural adjustment led by the…

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South Africa at 20: Storms behind the rainbow

April 27 marks the 20th anniversary of South Africa’s first democratic elections. Most of us remember those iconic images of citizens queuing up in long, snaking lines to vote Nelson Mandela and the African National Congress (ANC) into power. It was an extraordinary moment, replete with hope and pregnant with expectation, enough to supply years’…

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