Bua Briefs 140

8 July 2009

African Union (AU) Summit, Libya

The 13th Ordinary Session of the AU Summit took place in Sirte, Libya, from 1 to 3 July 2009 at the level of Permanent Representatives Committee (PRC) under the theme: Investing in Agriculture for Economic Growth and Food Security.

African Heads of State and Government were considering the unfolding of the current international financial crisis and its economic and social implications for our continent.

  • Various initiatives have been taken worldwide and in Africa to mitigate the contagious effects of the crisis and to contain its impact.
  • We need to promote the development and integration of African economies, notably through the establishment of three financial institutions, namely the African Monetary Fund, the African Central Bank and the African Investment Bank, which will monitor and coordinate African responses to future crises.
  • The financial crisis will continue to slow down global demand for basic commodities, reduce the volume of capital flows, both public and private, towards Africa, and affect the competitiveness of our economies.
  • Governments, regional and continental organisations as well as international institutions must enhance the mobilisation of domestic resources and stabilise finances to prevent a deep slowdown and economic upheavals.

The New Partnership for Africa’s Development’s (Nepad) vision and its programme are an intrinsic part of the AU system and should remain so.

  • The AU Commission and Nepad Secretariat must harmonise its programmes and smooth the working relations in the interim period leading to integration.
  • It must urgently conclude the integration process of Nepad into the structures and processes of the AU.
  • Africa should commit to the integration of African stock exchanges, which can help to boost efficiency in the mobilisation of domestic resources.
  • Speeding up the implementation of the G20 Summit resolutions, in particular the deployment of resources, will salvage vulnerable economies in the developing world.


Highlights: Good News stories: June-July 09

Infrastructural development for 2010 World Cup

  • R600 million upgrades in Tshwane/Pretoria
    Over R600 million has been allocated for infrastructure upgrades to revamp Tshwane/Pretoria for the 2010 Soccer World Cup. Loftus Versfeld is being upgraded to the tune of R131 million
  • Cape Town’s rail station gets R400-million makeover
    A R400-million investment has been made towards renovating Cape Town’s central station. This project forms part of the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa to spend R1,75 billion on World Cup projects.
  • New shops at Melrose Arch brave downturn
    The new retail outlet at Melrose Arch, Johannesburg, is scheduled to open in October 2009. A second Protea Hotel is scheduled to open early next year, signalling the completion of Phase Two of Melrose Arch.
  • South Africa to spend R30 billion on water-infrastructure projects – Sonjica
    South Africa would spend R30-billion over the next five to eight years on continuing construction and establishing 15 mega water-infrastructure projects.  Water and Environmental Affairs Minister Buyelwa Sonjica said, “that these projects would increase the capacity of existing water resources infrastructure.” 
  • Airports Company South Africa to upgrade Port Elizabeth departures terminal
    The Port Elizabeth airport’s departures terminal will be upgraded by early 2010. More check-out counters will be installed and the departure security points will be increased. The overall floor space of the departures lounge will also be would be expanded.


  • Gautrain passes speed test
    The Gautrain has achieved its top operating speed of 160km/h on test tracks. The trains will also be integrated with the system that warns drivers of excessive speeding and when approaching stop signals.

Social development

  • R600-million project to boost aid for poor residents
    The City of Johannesburg is to introduce an expanded social package of about R600 million aimed at helping people who earn less than R3 366 a month.


  • South Africa to maintain fiscal policies for growth
    South Africa will continue to pursue fiscal policies that have helped grow the economy and the Government will support state-owned firms' investment programmes.
  • Business confidence rises
    South African businesses are optimistic about the country’s economic climate. This is in accordance with the June Business Confidence Index compiled by the SA Chamber of Commerce and Industry, and which measures confidence in the economic climate.

Service delivery

  • Dlamini-Zuma vows to improve Home Affairs
    The Department of Home Affairs will be adding 13 additional service points as well as improving the effectiveness of the 117 computerised mobile units that are used to service remote areas. “Working together with the Department of Public Works, we should do more to improve the infrastructure of Home Affairs,” said the Minister of Home Affairs, Dr Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma.


The following are the good news stories that were noted on the coverage pertinent to government:

Safety & Security/Police

Science & Technology

  • Government to fund inventive ideas
    Government had launched the new Technology Innovation Agency (TIA) to help turn innovative ideas into profitable business ventures. Government stressed that only incentives with potential commercial value would be funded

Minerals & energy

  • South Africa to open up Coega in return for fuel supplies
    The Minister of Energy, Ms Dipuo Peters, has confirmed that South Africa is considering regional investment into its 400 000 barrels-per-day planned refinery at Coega in exchange for supplies of fuel products.


  • Mandela Day gains momentum
    Mandela Day is meant to be an annual event where people around the world are asked to spend 67 minutes of their time to do something which makes a difference to the world around them. A series of events is set to be staged across South Africa, New York and in other cities across the world to celebrate the day.