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Editors Comment

June 2024

We need to change that perception of non-investment that has long been a belief of many

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News

June 2024

COVER STORY: DZanetech and Hüttenes-Albertus (HA Group) linking Africa globally

Nurturing trust, fostering innovation and creating growth. “The foundry industry is crucial for driving economic growth, fostering employment opportunities, addressing poverty, and enhancing social unity. It serves a wide array of sectors where innovation and precision are key. We each have a role to play in sustaining this longstanding sector,” said Jacques Swanepoel, National Sales Manager at DZanetech.

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Sustainability in the metals value chain – a free conference workshop at the CSIR

The National Cleaner Production Centre (NCPC) will host a Sustainable Industries Conference on 11 and 12 September 2024 at the CSIR International Convention Centre (ICC) in Pretoria. The National Foundry Technology Network (NFTN) will make use of the conference to host a dedicated session for the metals castings sector to address the rising challenges facing the industry around environmental and carbon reporting requirements.

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DTIC minister Ebrahim Patel retires

South Africa’s trade, industry and competition minister Ebrahim Patel has retired from cabinet. He did so after the May 29 national election and is the latest longstanding economics figure from the ruling African National Congress to step down from government. Patel’s department oversees a number of regulatory and financial development agencies, including the competition commission which would have a say in any potential new bid by BHP Group BHP.AX for Anglo American AAL.L.

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Thomas Foundry completes melting upgrade

Celebrates 100 years of operating from current location in Germiston. In 2019 Thomas Foundry embarked on a project to upgrade and modernise their melting department, which had furnaces that had given a return on investment to the company, many times over. Nevertheless, there comes a time when the capital investment decision has to be made otherwise you start to lose clients because of late deliveries and poor quality.

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Proposed billet and precision casting foundry project. GeT Steel invites comment

Rely Intracast set to relocate to the site with the intention of establishing a new foundry. The GeT Metal Group announced in June 2023 that it had acquired Naledi Foundry Operations, one of the oldest and largest ferrous foundry operations in South Africa, that was placed in business rescue during April 2022.

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Ferrous Castings breathes new life into foundry

Danie Cronje took over Mustang Foundry in April 2023, changed the name to Ferrous Castings and immediately set about not just improving the foundry’s working space, but also the general workflow of operations on the foundry floor. Part of the acquisition of the foundry included the purchase of various equipment and assets.

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Sarco delivers sizable trunnion cast for SAG mill breakdown

South Africa Roll Company (Sarco), South Africa’s only mill roll and ring manufacturer has manufactured and delivered what it believes to be the largest locally cast semi-autogenous grinding (SAG) mill trunnion casting to grinding mill manufacturer New Concept Projects (NCP).

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Cape Town Copperheads recover more than 1.7 tons of stolen metal

The City of Cape Town recovered more than 1 700 kilograms of stolen metal between July 2023 and March 2024. The City’s Metals Theft Unit (MTU), also known as the Copperheads, recovered more than 53 000 metres of stolen cabling. The unit made 115 arrests and secured a 12-year prison sentence for one metal thief.

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Grinding Techniques emphasises the significance of making the correct grain choice

Making the correct abrasive choice is not just a matter of preference but a strategic decision that can significantly influence the entire metalworking process essentially enhancing the efficiency, quality, and cost-effectiveness of the overall foundry operations. Abrasives used within the Foundry Industry require therefore careful selection of the right grain and bonds.

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South Africa to host twelfth Africa Aerospace and Defence exhibition in September 2024

The Africa Aerospace and Defence (AAD) trade exhibition and air show will be held from 18 t0 22 September 2024 at Air Force Base Waterkloof, under the theme of ‘Exploring new paths, sharing solutions, showcasing innovation and capability’. More than half of the available exhibition space has already been booked and confirmed.

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[WATCH] Building the Ford Ranger locally: Behind-the-scenes video at the Silverton manufacturing plant

Ford’s Silverton manufacturing plant, based in Pretoria, is one of five manufacturing hubs of the Ranger pickup around the world. The Ranger nameplate has quickly become one of the leading contenders in its segment and established a solid foundation for the current Ranger to continue a reputation for quality, reliability and durability.

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Steel import duties and a shrinking steel manufacturing industry

In a recent communication to members and industry Gerhard Papenfus, Chief Executive of NEASA (The National Employers Association of South Africa) gave his views on steel import duties and a shrinking steel manufacturing industry. “Government’s continued interventions to protect an ailing AMSA, will not only fail to save AMSA in the long run, but will substantially contribute to the gradual erosion of the entire steel industry.”

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SANAS accreditation for Mintek’s production facilities and processes of CRMs

Mintek, a globally acknowledged leader in mineral research and innovation, has recently achieved yet another remarkable milestone. Mintek, renowned for its world-class research facilities and purpose-built infrastructure, has been awarded the prestigious RMP0018 accreditation by the South African National Accreditation System (SANAS) for its production facilities of Certified Reference Materials (CRMs).

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M-tec Powder SA announces a significant expansion in its aluminium powder production capabilities and introduction of mechanically produced aluminium powder

M-tec Powder SA is excited to announce a significant expansion in its aluminium powder production capabilities, reflecting the company’s ongoing commitment to innovation and customer satisfaction. This latest development introduces a new production option, enabling M-tec Powder SA to cater to the diverse needs of its clients with greater precision and variety.

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AMSA confirms that it is converting a blast furnace to an electric arc furnace

Steelmaker ArcelorMittal South Africa (AMSA) has confirmed that the company will be converting one of its three blast furnaces into an electric arc furnace (EAF) within the next four years. AMSA says it is still committed to its decarbonisation roadmap that will see it become net-zero producer of carbon by 2050. As part of this plan, the steel maker wants to reduce its carbon intensity by 25% by 2030.

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April 2024

COVER STORY: Foseco: The evolution of filtration

Foundry filtration has progressed significantly since Foseco first introduced ceramic foam filters to the casting industry over four decades ago. Since then, they have become firmly established as a critical component in the casting of high-quality parts with the latest advances extending their efficacy and use to even very large castings.

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Knights Foundry restructures, updates company image, revamps and extends buildings and enhances pre-casting capabilities

“Going forward our new slogan will be: Knights Foundry – Creating Metal Perfection One Pour At A Time.” Knights Foundry has announced a restructuring of its organisation, a modernisation and update of the company image, including a new logo, a revamp and extension of buildings and an investment in equipment that will enhance its pre-casting capabilities.

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DZanetech celebrates 10 years of ISOCAST 50 – a proprietary elemental ceramic foundry sand

“ISOCAST 50 is a spherically shaped, electro fused bauxite moulding media, with a proprietary elemental make-up, exclusive to DZanetech. Its core attributes of consistency, productivity and efficiency in the core and mould making fields, is what sets us apart from other ceramic sands,” explains Jacques Swanepoel, National Sales Manager at DZanetech.

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NFTN showcase upgraded Foundry Technology Centre to the metal casting sector

On Thursday, 14 March 2024, the National Foundry Technology Network (NFTN) together with the Council of Scientific Industrial Research (CSIR) hosted a site visit to the CSIR’s newly established Foundry Technology Centre (FTC) at the CSIR campus in Pretoria, Gauteng.

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Mining Indaba 2024

Mining Indaba 2024 elevated the Mining Indaba experience through the theme: Embracing the power of positive disruption: A bold new future for African mining – which aimed to encourage and support the needed change and disruption the African mining industry needs to move forward.

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Carbon International celebrates 5 years of successful operation and growth

One of the products the shaft kiln calcination plant in Sasolburg produces is PROCARB SG, a carbon raiser used in the steel industry and by ductile and grey iron foundries. The innovative plant is the first of its kind to be erected in this country and in fact the first plant to be erected outside of China by the Chinese process engineering company, SAMI.

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2024 RAPDASA-RobMech-PRASA-AMI Conference

Following the success of the 2023 RAPDASA Conference, joined by RobMech, PRASA and AMI, hosted at the CSIR in November 2023, we are pleased to announce the first call for papers for the 2024 RAPDASA international conference to be held on 28 – 31 October 2024 at the Boardwalk Hotel and Conference Venue in Gqeberha, South Africa.

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Proof Mining Services looking after mining safety with its flameproof products

Mining is an inherently harsh environment. Applications expose the wire, cable, the connectors, plugs and accessories to serious abuse, which is a common cause of failure. Choosing a high-performance industrial cable, assembly or accessory is critical to maintaining safety, and reducing labour, material and downtime costs.

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Rise in SA defence exports ‘miraculous’ – AMD

Following the Russian invasion of Ukraine and a consequent rise in global defence spending, South African defence exports have been steadily rising, according to National Conventional Arms Control Committee (NCACC) figures, and are up from R4.6 billion in 2022 and R3.3 billion in 2021. For the first three quarters of last year, they reached R4.9 billion (full calendar year figures are still to be released).

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Atmospheric Emission License but note the rules if you purchase new equipment, change or add a process or change ownership

As everyone in the industry knows the Environmental Authorisation (EA) and Atmospheric Emissions License (AEL), is required by law. If you don’t comply you could be liable for a big fine. Air emissions licenses (AELs) are obligatory under the National Environmental Management: Air Quality Act 139 of 2004 (AQA) for activities that result in atmospheric emissions.

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Ferrous scrap is emerging as a key strategic raw material

Decarbonisation efforts are now being ramped up across the globe, and as countries begin to implement new export restrictions to meet their key net zero goals, ferrous scrap is rapidly becoming a highly sought-after commodity. Global economists and strategists ING have produced a really interesting report on this subject. Here are some basics. To read the full report visit the link given herein.

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2023 DealMakers Business Rescue Transaction of the Year awarded to business rescue practitioners that advised and guided Cast Products South Africa

Each year, DealMakers releases its Annual Rankings at a black tie Gala Awards Dinner held in Sandton, Johannesburg. Attended by over 500 paying guests, the event is a celebration of the work undertaken by the industry in the previous year.

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How ArcelorMittal South Africa plans to wind down its longs business

The second half of the financial year 2023 was dominated by the announcement of the contemplation of the wind down of the broader longs business. Despite best efforts, the ArcelorMittal South Africa initiatives implemented prior to the announcement had not been able to counter the combined effect.

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Toyota South Africa to invest in its local manufacturing operations

Toyota Hilux and Fortuner hybrids now in local production line-up. Toyota South Africa is to invest in its local manufacturing operations, according to Toyota South Africa president and CEO Andrew Kirby. This includes buying new equipment, upgrading its facilities, and prioritising carbon-neutral activities.

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Correction: Special Steels has not acquired Harchris Heat Treatment

In the February 2024 issue of Castings SA we reported that engineering steel merchant and value-added processing company Special Steels had announced that it had acquired Harchris Heat Treatment so as to increase its range of value-added services for existing and new clients.

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February 2024

COVER STORY: Endeco Omega Sinto invest in material processing equipment

Accredited with ISO 45001, ISO 14001 and ISO 9001:2015 certification. Having just completed one of the most successful years in the company’s history, local fabricating and foundry equipment manufacturer Endeco Omega Sinto have now invested in metal processing equipment. The equipment – a 6kW fibre laser and a 165 ton press brake – will be used to cut and bend material to fabricate assemblies used in the manufacture of foundry related equipment.

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Semi-automatic monorail system at Atlantis Foundries eliminates the use of forklifts, reduces the risk of spillage, as well as ensuring a much safer work environment in the molten metal department [VIDEO]

ITACA LTS ladle transport system, designed and installed by ProService Srl. “While many foundries are looking at processes in their foundry to reduce costs and increase productivity and quality, few realise that a fresh approach to their materials handling equipment could help to keep the company competitive.”

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The dtic calls for comments on the extension of the ban on scrap metal exports

Calls for the ban to be scrapped grow. The Department of Trade, Industry and Competition (the dtic) has published a request for comments from interested parties on key aspects of the Scrap Metals Policy. Aspects include the proposal to extend the temporary prohibition of the export of certain ferrous and non-ferrous waste and scrap metal.

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Innov-X-Africa showcasing products at African Mining Indaba

“Mining Indaba is the pinnacle event for promoting long-term investment in African mining. Attracting a broad and prominent speaker line-up, including industry professionals, policymakers, and stakeholders from around the country and beyond in order to promote economic growth and foster positive changes in the mining industry,” said Stuart Bateman, Innov-X-Africa’s Sales Director.

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Andrew Kirby on the ‘Year that Was’

Citing monetary and structural challenges such as an elevated repo rate (8,5% in 2023), depreciating Rand (13% down on the dollar last year), a record-breaking 332 days with load shedding, and up to a five-week backlog at the country’s ports, Kirby made clear that this negatively impacted GDP and therefore concomitantly business confidence as well.

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Machine Tools Africa 2024 set to take place in May 2024

Machine Tools Africa 2024, Africa’s only machine tools exhibition showcasing cutting edge developments across the machine tools and related industries is set to take place in May 2024. A Machine Tools Merchants’ Association of South Africa (MTMA) event, Machine Tools Africa will be taking place at the Expo Centre in Nasrec, Johannesburg, from 21 to 24 May 2024.

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Cape Town calls for deadline on private sector port involvement

The City of Cape Town says it wants a “clear deadline” from Transnet and national government on private sector involvement in the Port of Cape Town. With a private sector partner set to start operations at the Port of Durban in April, Cape Town Economic Growth MMC James Vos notes that “there is continued silence from national government on a timeline for a sorely-needed private sector partner boost for Cape Town.”

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Urgent appeal to stop closure of ArcelorMittal’s long steel business

South African steel buyers expect the planned closure of the country’s only iron ore-based long products mill to result in rising prices. “This is not a steel industry problem, this is a South African problem. The domino effect we expect will cost jobs into the hundreds of thousands and destroy trust in our steel market,” said Neels van Niekerk, CEO, International Steel Fabricators of South Africa.

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Competition Commission approves Alfeco Holdings acquisition of Pro Roof Industrial

Veer Steel Mills and SA Steel Mills will now fall under one roof. The Competition Commission has approved the proposed transaction whereby Alfeco Holdings intends to acquire Pro Roof, with conditions. The primary acquiring firm Alfeco, is owned and controlled by a family trust and an individual. Relevant to the proposed transaction, Alfeco owns Veer Steel Mills (Pty) Ltd.

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Neasa wants new steel import duties reversed

“Quite astonishingly, a whole new set of duties to protect AMSA was introduced in December 2023. These duties include certain specifications of galvanised coil, which AMSA does not even manufacture,” said Gerhard Papenfus, the Chief Executive of the National Employers Association of South Africa (Neasa) in a recent newsletter of the association.

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Port congestion and incompetence taking its toll on exports

Port congestion is quite common in container terminals around the world and many are attributing it to the increase of container ships which has grown 1 452.68 % in the last 50 years. To avoid a long port stay, terminals were pressed to use more gantry cranes and labour to complete the loading and discharging operations quicker.

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Competition Commission has approved Foxconn EV’s acquisition of ZF Chassis Modules

The Commission has approved the proposed transaction whereby Foxconn EV intends to acquire ZF Chassis Modules, with conditions. The primary acquiring firm, Foxconn EV, is a company incorporated in accordance with the laws of the Republic of Singapore. The Acquiring Group only controls a single firm incorporated in South Africa, namely JUSDA South Africa Supply Chain Management Proprietary Limited.

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Developing scalable methods to produce green hydrogen in South Africa

Over the next years, South Africa could play a decisive role as a reliable producer and possible supplier of green hydrogen for countries like Germany. However, there are currently challenges pertaining to the storage and distribution of this raw material. The joint project “HySecunda” recently initiated by Fraunhofer, whose participants include nine Fraunhofer Institutes as well as the Fraunhofer Academy, aims to address these challenges.

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December 2023

COVER STORY: Successful conversion from cupola to induction furnace

The conversion from cupola to induction furnaces is a decisive step for foundries on the path to decarbonising their production. An important challenge here is scrap quality, which must be better in the induction furnace than in the cupola. ABP Induction and Zorc Technologies offer specially developed tools for this purpose, which allow optimised operation of the induction furnace.

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Atlantis Foundries automates core assembly

As metalcasters contend with a shortage of skilled workers, the requirements for environmental protection and resource conservation, increased quality requirements, and greater emphasis on ergonomics, Atlantis Foundries is expanding its focus on complete automation. Robotic Innovations uses Fanuc robots for picking and placing as well as core trimming.

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Viking Foundry includes flaskless moulding with investment in Sinto FDNX series horizontal parting flaskless moulding machine [VIDEO]

“It has been a period of expansion and growth. But more importantly we began an improvement programme in the foundry, resulting in the installation of a new Inductotherm 900kW VIP Power-Trak Li Power and Control System, which includes a one-ton and a two-ton Dura-Line melting furnace,” said Operations Director Greg Estman.

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GfE-MIR Alloys and Minerals SA (Pty) Ltd has been acquired by the Heneken Group

“The Board, Management and Staff of GfE-MIR Alloys and Minerals SA (Pty) Ltd have the pleasure in announcing the successful conclusion of an agreement with the Heneken Group, whereby the Heneken Group has acquired GfE-MIR Alloys and Minerals SA (Pty) Ltd,” said Russel Symons, past Managing Director and founder of GfE-MIR Alloys and Minerals in South Africa.

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ArcelorMittal to shut Newcastle and remainder of Vereeniging operations

ArcelorMittal South Africa shares have crashed as the company announced that it is putting its major Newcastle and Vereeniging long steel operations in care and maintenance due to a lack of demand. More than 3 500 employees will be affected by the decision. Long steel products include wire, rods, railway rails and bars.

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Sibanye-Stillwater’s shares drop after it buys metals recycler Reldan for R3 billion on its journey towards net zero

Shares in Sibanye-Stillwater dropped recently after it said it had acquired US-based metals recycler Reldan Group of Companies (Reldan) for $155.4 million (R2.9 billion) as its CEO, Neal Froneman, hunts for worthy green metals assets. Froneman is on the acquisition trail after the group last week announced it had purchased a Tasmania copper mine in Australia for $10million.

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Atlantis Foundries installing second Nederman MikroPul FS type filter for dust extraction and air filter system

In its quest to become a Smart Foundry, Atlantis Foundries has not neglected its duty to environmental best practices and more importantly, its staff, suppliers and clients. The Nederman MikroPul FS type filter was purchased from Nederman MikroPul, who are based in Germany, and Mondeco handled the local scope as well as all aspects of installation based on detailed engineering from Nederman MikroPul.

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Seidor introduces foundry-specific ERP software Metal One, which is certified by multinational SAP

Seidor, an international technology consultancy firm that offers a comprehensive portfolio of solutions from SAP and is a SAP Platinum partner, specialises in implementing and supporting some of SAP’s most popular business management solutions and has introduced the foundry-specific ERP software Metal One to the local industry.

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Africa’s first decarbonised iron plant to be built in Namibia

The Oshivela project in the west of the country is backed by the German government. Namibia has begun construction of Africa’s first decarbonised iron plant, to be powered exclusively by green hydrogen, the country’s investment promotion body said.

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Ford Motor Company South Africa (FMCSA) has announced it will start producing plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV) Ranger models

Ford Motor Company is celebrating its proud 100-year legacy in South Africa with the announcement of a R5.2 billion (US$272 million) investment in its local operations for production of the first-ever Ford Ranger Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle (PHEV). Ford is also marking this historic milestone with the reveal of an expanded product range that will soon be available to its South African customers.

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Is South Africa’s infrastructure ready to meet the global demand for manganese ore?

Manganese becomes key battery material. For a long time, South Africa has hinged its prosperity on gold, and the development and economic prosperity of the province of Gauteng gives testimony to this fact. Recent decades, however, have seen production of gold wane dramatically, from an era of having been our majority metal export to now being a small minority at 23% by sales in 2022.

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Volkswagen South Africa’s Managing Director Martina Biene says the local operation is here to stay

This comes days after the company’s global CEO Thomas Schäfer said he was “very worried” about the viability of the South African manufacturing operation, given the increasing cost of mitigating load shedding disruptions as well as port delays and rising labour costs.

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Mercedes-Benz South Africa announces advancements in CO2 neutral manufacturing with R100 million investment

In advancing its commitment to environmental sustainability, through an investment of R100 million, Mercedes-Benz South Africa (MBSA) will install 22 847 photovoltaic (PV) technology (solar panels) at its East London manufacturing plant, to convert sunlight into electrical energy and to contribute to carbon reduction in the manufacturing process.

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Invitation for public comment on second-hand goods act, 2009 (ACT NO. 06 OF 2009) amendments to regulations for dealers and recyclers

Government has called for comments on proposed amendments to the second-hand goods act to monitor scrap metal trade for dealers and recyclers, particularly impacting the iron and steel sector. These changes are intended to give effect to Phase 2 of the Scrap metal Policy to Limit Damage to Infrastructure and the Economy.

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Business Rescue Practitioners clear up issue of temporary closure notice for Cast Products South Africa

The business rescue practitioners tasked with the business rescue of Cast Products South Africa have responded with the following statement with regard to questions asked about a memorandum sent to staff on the 20th October 2023: “We confirm that all CPSA foundries are presently running as normal, and that the closure was a temporary measure that was instituted for a week whilst the business rescue team was resolving internal matters at the company.”

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Sandvik Coromant has entered into partnership with the Application Centre for Additive Manufacturing at RISE

Additive manufacturing, commonly known as 3D printing, enables a paradigm shift in the manufacturing industry, impacting various sectors. In an effort to support the manufacturing industry in embracing the technology and further the Swedish adoption of it, RISE founded the Application Centre for Additive Manufacturing, in collaboration with industrial partners and academia.

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The casting that turned boating upside down

The announcement was out: Recreational products manufacturer BRP was discontinuing its iconic Evinrude line of outboard engines. For employees at the Sturtevant, Wisconsin, plant that built them, the landscape was changing. A hint in the company’s official press release on May 27, 2020, lifted the curtain hem on something brewing that might just take the boating industry by storm.

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October 2023

COVER STORY: Improving the profitability with foundry chemicals: ASK Chemicals

Efficiency in the process chain brings a competitive edge. Foundries who want to cut costs, increase productivity, offer a high-quality product and at the same time lower the environmental impact must keep an eye on the entire value chain. Possible levers can be found at many points in the process – one crucial factor is the selection of suitable foundry chemicals and materials.

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Ceramic & Alloy Specialists celebrates 25 years in the molten metal industry

25 years ago, Mike Retief left the comfort of corporate life and ventured out and started his own business Ceramic & Alloy Specialists, representing both international and local manufacturers and supplying the foundry, aluminium smelter and steel manufacturing industries in South Africa.

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Refraline installs magnetic separator plant to produce foundry grade chromite sand using the ‘dry’ process

“We are exporting foundry grade chromite sand and the requirement for the product is that the silica has to be less than one per cent. As we all know chromite is an important raw material in South Africa as chrome mining in South Africa facilitates half the world’s production of chrome ore,” explained Manfred Rosch, MD of Refraline.

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Credit Suisse acquires 5.38% stake in Insimibi Industrial Holdings and then disposes beneficial interest in securities to UBS Group AG

In a significant development in the South African business landscape, Credit Suisse Group AG has acquired a 5.38% stake in Insimibi Industrial Holdings Limited (ISB). The announcement was made in compliance with the Companies Act and JSE Limited Listings Requirements on the 1st June 2023.

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NFTN’s skill development initiatives: Engineering a bright future for foundries

The National Foundry Technology Network (NFTN) and the National Cleaner Production Centre, South Africa (NCPC-SA) are providing free training courses designed specifically for the foundry and metal casting industry to fulfil the demands of a fast-changing global landscape.

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ITAC scrap metal enforcement: Three companies fined for contravention of export permit conditions

In a statement issued by ITAC it said: “It has come to the attention of ITAC that three companies who attempted to export scrap metal and copper ingots without valid export permits, or contravened the export permit conditions issued by the International Trade Administration Commission of South Africa, have been fined in the Durban Regional Court on Wednesday 6 September 2023.”

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Dylan Lewis: Artist gardens of the world

Dylan Lewis’ sculptures stand alongside the greats globally. His oeuvre has spanned decades and demonstrates a depth of technical skill that’s met by conceptual complexity. The Dylan Lewis Sculpture Garden in Stellenbosch translates this work across mediums into a self-contained world of artistic expression.

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Foseco South Africa appoints Lungile Koti as new General Manager

Foseco South Africa has announced the appointment of Lungile Koti as its new General Manager for the company’s South African foundry division’s manufacturing plant and sales office, which is situated in Alrode, Gauteng. Koti succeeds Enno Krueger who left the company at the end of 2022.

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Global leader in sustainable technologies Johnson Matthey to close its South African manufacturing plant by the end of October 2023

In a development that will send shock waves through the automotive and platinum mining industry in South Africa, Johnson Matthey has decided to close its manufacturing plant in Germiston, Gauteng as of the end of October 2023. Although there has been no official announcement it is believed employees were already advised in March/April this year.

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Investment pledge by automotive component manufacturers

The R4.8 billion investment pledge announced by the National Association of Automotive Component and Allied Manufacturers (NAACAM) reflected the “strong vote of confidence in the South African economy”, Trade, Industry, and Competition Minister Ebrahim Patel said at the recent NAACAM Show 2023 on 31 August 2023.

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Coega Steels unveils ambitious rolling mill project

Coega Steels, a producer of steel products, is set to revolutionise the Eastern Cape’s economic landscape through its R160 million ground-breaking rolling mill facility project. This initiative, which was publicly announced during the South African Investment Conference earlier this year, aims to fortify the region’s industrial capabilities and stimulate economic growth.

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R.C. Electrical Systems moves to facility in Wadeville to accommodate manufacturing expansion and growth in core blowing service

R.C. Electrical Systems was established in 1987. Initially specialising in electrical automation, the business evolved and entered the foundry industry to manufacture various equipment used in the foundry process. As electrical contractors they manufactured and installed industrial process control systems and motor control centres, both of which continue to be part of the core business.

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Stellantis says it will invest R3 billion in a greenfield manufacturing facility in Coega

Vehicle manufacturer Stellantis says it will invest R3 billion to develop a greenfield manufacturing facility in Coega, in the Eastern Cape, along with the Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) and the Department of Trade, Industry and Competition (dtic). The manufacturing plant is scheduled for completion by the end of 2025.

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Bingelela Alloys launches aluminium hub in Richards Bay

Bingelela Alloys launched an aluminium hub in Richards Bay that will use molten aluminium from the nearby Hillside smelter. The launch was praised by deputy minister of trade, industry, and competition Nomalungelo Gina, and Umhlathuze mayor Xolani Ngwezi. They said the hub would boost the local and national economy and create jobs.

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Market pressure pushes South32 to find green energy for Hillside fast

South32 is in a race against time to find green energy for its Hillside aluminium smelters in KwaZulu-Natal’s, Richards Bay if the diversified miner wants to guarantee access to markets in Europe and the Americas. CEO Graham Kerr said there is an increasing demand for green aluminium from Europe. “And that worries us. We need to prepare Hillside to make sure we can keep on selling to Europe.

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Foseco celebrates association with Magma with the release of a new version of the Foseco Pro module

Foseco, the foundry division of Vesuvius and a world leading supplier of casting consumables, and Magma, a supplier of casting process simulation and virtual optimisation systems, celebrate the 20th anniversary of their strategic alliance with the release of a new version of the Foseco Pro module.

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Dates set for GIFA, METEC, THERMPROCESS and NEWCAST trade fair in 2027

World-leading trade fair quartet welcomes the international foundry and metallurgical industries to Düsseldorf again in 2027. The new dates for the GIFA, METEC, THERMPROCESS and NEWCAST trade fairs have been set. The leading international trade fairs of the industry will present themselves at the Düsseldorf Exhibition Centre from 21 to 25 June 2027.

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HA-International appoints Gordon McNeilage as its CEO

HA-International has announced that it has appointed Gordon McNeilage to the position of CEO, effective January 1st, 2024. Gordon succeeds Mike Feehan, who had this to say: “Gordon joined HAI in 2023 and has led the commercial team as VP of Sales and Marketing.

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August 2023

COVER STORY: Spectro Analytical Instruments introduces the new SpectroLAB S LAS02 high-end arc/spark OES metal analyser

Spectro Analytical Instruments has introduced its new SpectroLAB S LAS02 high-end arc/spark OES metal analyser for process control and research applications that is designed to deliver the fastest possible measurements, greatest throughput, lowest limits of detection, longest uptime, and most future-proof flexibility.

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Eskom causes havoc for industry in the East Rand

Power utility Eskom said in a statement on 26 July 2023 that it was directly load shedding the City of Ekurhuleni customers in all the substations that were previously handed over to the municipality to manage. Eskom said it was effective from 24 July 2023, catching many in the area by surprise and unprepared.

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Atlantis Foundries signs agreement for major solar power purchase project

Agreement comprises more than 20 000 solar panels and a total rated capacity of 13.5MWp. Atlantis Foundries, one of Africa’s largest foundry operations, has signed a long-term power purchase agreement with Energy Partners, an integrated energy solutions company. Atlantis Foundries is part of major vehicle manufacturer Daimler Truck AG, commonly known and referred to as Mercedes.

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Watt Industries’ electricity demand management system makes significant savings at High Duty Castings

“Long gone are the days where South Africa generated enough electricity for domestic load and even exported to neighbouring countries. Electricity usage, demand and network limits and the continuous load shedding and Eskom’s requests for all South Africans to use electricity wiser, are probably one of the highest talked about topics in South Africa,” said Wessel Watt of Watt Industries.

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DZanetech consolidates national footprint

“The Western Cape is an example where it is relatively small in terms of the number of actual industrial foundries operating in the area but it is bolstered by one large foundry that operates in the automotive space and then the majority of art foundries that exist in South Africa are based in the Western Cape area,” said Jacques Swanepoel, National Sales Manager of DZanetech.

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KCS Foundry and Engineering starts to pump out castings

“A completely new plant is the most cost-efficient solution and the best alternative from an environmental and quality standpoint when it comes to the future supply of strategically important castings for our client needs,” stated Ernest Suluma, founder and Director of Operations at KCS Foundry and Engineering. KCS Foundry and Engineering can now say they are operating as a fully-fledged foundry.

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Sustainability, digitalisation, circular economy and innovative technologies such as AI and 3D printing were the key themes at GIFA/GMTN 2023

First it was the build-up and anticipation – you could say four years – then it was the actual happening that seemed to rush by so quickly and now it is time to reflect. For our previous visit in 2019 the weather was wonderful and hot and this time around it was no different.

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GIFA/GMTN 2023: An image portrayal of South African visitors

A number of people made the effort to attend the exhibition and in this story we take a look at a selection of photographs portraying some of the South African visitors and exhibitors that attended GIFA/GMTN 2023.

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Observations & opinions of GIFA (GMTN) 2023

When visiting a large exhibition like GIFA (GMTN) 2023 I always try to get the visitors and suppliers/exhibitors that I meet in Düsseldorf to participate in the report back of the exhibition by offering their observations and opinions rather than have a one-sided viewpoint from myself.

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In loving memory of George Justus: Honouring a life filled with passion and warmth

“We pay tribute to the extraordinary life of George Justus, a beloved director of Natal Refractories (Pty) Ltd. With heavy hearts, we share the news of his passing at the age of 63. As we join together from all corners of the world, our thoughts are with George’s family, friends, colleagues, and all who have been touched by his remarkable journey.”

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Consortium of investors and GeT Metal Group rescues Rely Precision Casting from business rescue

Following a significant restructure, Rely Precision Casting (Pty) Ltd (Rely) has been bought by a consortium of successful investors, one of whom is the GeT Metal Group (GMG). Rely had been in business rescue for 14 months and have now filed for substantial implementation of the agreed business rescue plan with the CIPC, thereby effectively taking the business out of business rescue.

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Omega Sinto is Weir’s chosen partner for capital foundry equipment

Blue skies thinking for an Industry 4.0 approach to expanding production rate at Weir’s small to medium sized plants. Starting in 2018, Weir undertook the project of expanding the production rate for their small to medium size plants. The smaller plant (LMM) has moulds up to 1.3m x 1.3m x 0.9m and the medium sized plant (shuttle) up to 2.2m x 2.2mm x 1.8m, space was at a premium and the biggest bottleneck was floor space for casting the moulds.

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Magotteaux reaches majority stake (51%) in GMSA, expanding its presence in the South African grinding media market

Magotteaux, a global leader in high-performance grinding media, is pleased to announce the successful acquisition of 36% of the shares of Grinding Media South Africa (GMSA), reaching a majority stake (51%) in GMSA, a prominent company manufacturing grinding balls in South Africa. This acquisition marks a significant milestone in Magotteaux’s longstanding association with the South African market.

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Scrap metal export ban – MRA media statement

Gazette 11593 of 15 June 2023, notice no 48791, announced the immediate ban in the export of copper scrap metal, ferrous scrap metal and ferrous ingots, for a further period of 6 months (a previous similar ban existed 01/12/2022 to 31/05/2023), ostensibly to prevent infrastructure theft.

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Innov-X Africa take steps to avoid load shedding

“There has been plenty written and spoken about Eskom and load shedding in South Africa and sadly the situation is not getting better in any way at all. The situation has had some sort of effect on every single South African and those that visit our country,” said Stuart Bateman, Managing Member of Innov-X Africa.

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Toyota to manufacture its mild-hybrid Hilux bakkie at Prospection, Durban plant

During a press conference, where the company also announced its intention to launch a more affordable bakkie, Toyota South Africa’s senior vice president for sales and marketing, Leon Theron, confirmed that mild hybrid versions of the Hilux and Fortuner would be launched locally in 2024.

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Competition Commission approves acquisition of the Zimco Group

The Competition Commission has recommended that the Competition Tribunal approve the proposed transaction whereby Leif 853 intends to acquire Zimco, with conditions. The primary acquiring firm is Leif 853. Leif 853 is jointly controlled by AutoX Proprietary Limited and Trinitas Equity Partners Proprietary Limited.

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June 2023

COVER STORY: Stronger together: The power of one

The past 10 years have seen global socio-economic and political upheaval, environmental challenges Covid-19 and climate change have not gone unnoticed. All of these have had an impact on South Africa leaving it with these and many of its own challenges to confront.

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Insimbi Group consolidates foundry and alloy divisions

Effectively Insimbi Alloy Supplies (Pty) Ltd, Insimbi Aluminium Alloys (Pty) Ltd and Minerals2Metals (Pty) Ltd will now be under one executive management team. The Insimbi Group might not be adopting a new colour scheme or changing its corporate logo but it is taking the opportunity to consolidate its foundry, powders and alloy divisions into one in the wake of the retirement of two long-serving, senior directors.

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Naledi Foundry acquired by the GeT Metal Group

Facility to be re-purposed into billet manufacturing operation with plans to install a rolling mill. The GeT Metal Group has announced that it has acquired Naledi Foundry Operations, one of the oldest and largest ferrous foundry operations in South Africa, that was placed in business rescue during April 2022.

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Historic Isandlwana area fenced off by municipality after war material is stolen

The Umzinyathi District Municipality has fenced off the historic Isandlwana battle site near Nquthu in northern KwaZulu-Natal after individuals were caught stealing war material, metal that was most likely to end up in in a scrap yard, on the mountain that is meant for display and educational purposes.

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Scrap metal export ban: Government to extend period by a further nine months

On the 15th of May 2023, a notice was issued in the Government Gazette by the Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition, Ebrahim Patel, calling for comments on extending the ban on the trade of ferrous and non-ferrous waste and scrap metals. Such an extension would also allow the Department to use this time to move into phase 2 of its project.

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Armoured vehicle (Badger) programme is not at risk

Denel’s contract to supply new generation combat vehicles to the SANDF is not in jeopardy and it will continue to deliver the Badger vehicles in terms of its contract. Mike Kgobe, interim Group CEO of Denel says reports that Denel is being sued for R112m over the project by the Finnish defence company, Patria, are false.

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Ed Liechti retires as CEO of Insimbi Alloys Supplies

After spending 34 years with at first the founding company Metallurg SA, the company that would subsequently change its name to Insimbi Alloy Supplies before being listed on the JSE, and then with the holding company Insimbi Group, Ed Liechti, the CEO of Insimbi Alloy Supplies, has decided to retire.

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National Refractory Industries celebrates 30th anniversary

To reach three decades as a going and growing concern in business is an accomplishment worth celebrating. And this is exactly what National Refractory Industries (NRI) is doing this year. Established by Managing Director Jean Lopez in 1993, who started his business in a small factory in Epping, Cape Town, NRI has now grown into a well-known operation with a number of subsidiaries nationwide.

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GIFA, METEC, THERMPROCESS and NEWCAST (GMTN 2023)

Düsseldorf trade fair quartet focuses on hot topics ecoMetals, decarbonisation and circular economy. From 12 to 16 June 2023 Düsseldorf, Germany will become the centre for the international casting and metallurgical industries. The world’s leading trade fairs GIFA, METEC, THERMPROCESS and NEWCAST, which are held every four years and together cover the complete spectrum of foundry technology, castings, metallurgy and thermo process technology, will take place.

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April 2023

Foseco to display a host of products at GIFA 2023

With the commencement of the international GIFA 2023 exhibition scheduled to begin in little over two months, Foseco have released a number of new products recently that will be on display for the first time. Covering more than 900m² in Hall 12, the Foseco stand will feature many innovations for non-ferrous foundries including melt treatment, crucibles and refractories, aluminium melt shop, innovative sand core binder solutions for HPDC and methoding and coatings for aluminium foundries.

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NFTN to showcase South African foundry industry at GMTN/GIFA 2023

The National Foundry Technology Network (NFTN) at the CSIR has announced that it has secured funding to participate at GMTN 2023, the world’s most important exhibition and premier event for foundry technology, cast products, metallurgy, and thermal process technology.

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In the eye of the beholder

In a relatively short time South African sculptor Marco Olivier has taken his passion of creating artwork to be noticed and recognised not only by clients but, also by other artists. It is no coincidence that his larger than life and positive demeanour has been the driving force behind his success. And it is not just in artwork where he has been driven to achieve and succeed.

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Affable Dudley de Beer retires

“Not many can say they have remained in the same industry their whole professional working career. I started off with Denver Metal Works in 1977 as a laboratory assistant and I have held a number of technical and management positions in the metals industry since then, both on the supplier side and also working at a foundry,” says Dudley de Beer.

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GeT Metal Group acquires Eclipse East Foundry and the Standard Foundry property

Opens a greenfield foundry for the production of aluminium and copper alloys from scrap in Knights, Germiston. The GeT Metal Group has announced that it has acquired the Eclipse East Foundry and the Standard Foundry property and its assets from Cast Products South Africa.

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Business Rescue Practitioners confirm sale of Eclipse Foundry and Standard Foundry

Union Junction in Germiston under pressure. The Business Rescue Practitioners involved in trying to save Cast Products South Africa (CPSA) have confirmed the sale of Eclipse Foundry and Standard Foundry to GeT Metals Group.

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Cerefco celebrates 40-year milestone

2023 marks the year that Cerefco celebrates 40 years of continuous operation as a family-owned business supporting customers with capital equipment, service and spare parts in the metallurgical, industrial and induction melting, heating and welding sectors. Cerefco’s Managing Director, Scott Melville, reflects on a rich history that has gotten the company to where it is today.

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Changes to the board at Insimbi

In January 2023 the company announced that non-executive director Ingiphile Mogotlane had resigned from the board of directors of the company’s board as a member of the company’s audit and risk committee and as the chairperson of the company’s social, ethics and transformation committee, following the end of her tenure as a representative of a material shareholder of Insimbi.

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Malleable Castings swallowed up in acquisition by the Baobab Industrial Group

The Competition Commission has approved another proposed transaction whereby Holdco intends to acquire DLM and WRE, without conditions. The acquiring firm HoldCo (Baobab Industrial Group), a newly incorporated private company, does not conduct any business operations and is not directly or indirectly controlled by any other firm.

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RAPDASA Conference will again be joined by the Robotics and Mechatronics, PRASA and Advanced Materials Initiative conferences

The Rapid Product Development Association of South Africa (RAPDASA) has announced that it will be joined for its 24th Annual International Conference by the 16th Robotics and Mechatronics (RobMech), the 34th Pattern Recognition Association of South Africa (PRASA) and the 4th South African Advanced Materials Initiative (CoSAAMI) conferences.

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BMW celebrates 50 years in South Africa

BMW South Africa is celebrating 50 years since the opening of its Rosslyn plant in March 1973, which marked the establishment of the first BMW production site outside Germany. Over the past five decades, the Rosslyn plant has produced more than 1.6 million cars and has proven to be an essential member of the marque’s global production network.

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Multotec celebrates 50 years and proudly showcases its African roots as it expands its global footprint

Multotec, an industry leader in metallurgy and process engineering, is commemorating its 50th anniversary and is marking this milestone by reaffirming its position as a proudly South African company that can compete with top global competitors. The company was established in 1973, starting with an imported screening product from Germany intended for the sand and gravel industry.

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Load shedding gives criminals the space to do as they please

Cables theft and other electrified infrastructure are far more easily accessible. A review of statistics over a seven-month period has shown a significant increase in cable theft arrests by the City of Cape Town’s metal theft unit since November, coinciding with increased higher stages of load shedding.

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Portable analytical instruments manufacturer opens dedicated office in South Africa

Fast growing, Boston, US-based company SciAps has announced that the company has opened an office in South Africa to oversee the marketing, distribution and servicing of its products in the Southern African region as well as penetrate and gain market share in the rest of Africa.

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Stellantis signs framework agreement to manufacture vehicles in South Africa

Stellantis has announced that it has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the South African government’s Industrial Development Corporation (IDC) and the Department of Trade, Industry and Competition (DTIC) to develop a manufacturing facility in the country.

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February 2023

Efficient mould handling with Endeco Omega Sinto

The decision to use binder systems in a foundry operation for moulds and cores is based on the evaluation of many factors. Some of the factors to consider are production rate, capital outlay, operating costs, required quality level, environmental impact, skill of labour force, existing equipment (pattern/core), and sand availability. Each foundry will develop a list of its own important factors when making this decision.

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Carbon International commissions state-of-the-art laboratory

Carbon International Trading (Pty) Ltd (CIT), a Durrans Group company, operates a vertical shaft kiln calcination plant in Sasolburg in the Free State province of South Africa and has been in operation since July 2019. Carbon International recently commissioned and built a state-of-the-art laboratory at their facilities to ensure that their product always remains in the customer requested specifications.

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Laempe Mössner Sinto forms strategic alliance with Endeco Omega Sinto

German family-owned company Laempe Mössner Sinto, a world leader in the field of core moulding technology have announced that they have formed a strategic alliance with local engineering and manufacturing company Endeco Omega Sinto to market and service all Laempe Mössner Sinto’s equipment that includes core shooters, sand mixers and gas units to complement the core shooters and automated visual inspection systems.

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Message from the SAIF President Nigel Pardoe

“Dear SAIF members, industry stakeholders, and colleagues 2022 started with so much promise after all the effects of the Covid lockdowns and challenges faced in 2021. Industry members were hopeful that the year would bring a much-needed recovery after countries and businesses began eliminating various mandatory restrictions coupled with the increase in Covid vaccinations.”

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That’s a wrap for Dakar 2023: Second consecutive victory for Toyota Gazoo Racing

Stillam are excited to continue their relationship with Hallspeed and Toyota Gazoo Racing SA for what has been the 18th year. The company supplies Edgecam software, which plays a pivotal role in swiftly producing high precision parts for the three top-performing Toyota SA Motorsport’s Dakar Rally entries.

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Weir Minerals Africa implements Replicast process at its Isando plant

Precision parts manufactured at a cost-effective entry price are a prize contract for any manufacturer and something of an ongoing challenge. There is also the steady demand to maintain tolerances for size, gauge, performance and lately there is the challenge of fending off emerging technologies that promise more efficiency, more accuracy and quick production.

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74% of employees in South Africa say that robots should be more widely used in production, but fear robot hacking

According to Kaspersky research, employees in South Africa believe that the better robots become at different tasks, the fewer jobs will remain for humans. The majority of local employees surveyed (74%) believe that robots should be more widely used across different industries, however, many fear robot hacking.

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ArcelorMittal’s plan to revive Saldanha Steel plant

ArcelorMittal South Africa (Amsa) is looking to restart its operations in Saldanha Bay and re-employ hundreds of people, an energy application lodged with the energy regulator shows. This is according to a report late last year put out by IOL. After stating for some time that it might reopen the facility using hydrogen made from renewable energy, the steel company said it is hoping to make low-carbon iron at the facility.

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Trade and Industry announcement on measures to restrict scrap metal trade

Government has announced details of targeted measures to address the theft of public infrastructure for resale as scrap metal that causes more than R47 billion damage annually to the economy. The measures involve prohibition of export of scrap copper and ferrous metal for a six-month period, which will be followed by a system to regulate trade in such metals.

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Background note: Scrap metal measures by the dtic

On Wednesday, 16 November 2022, Cabinet considered and approved a comprehensive package of measures to address the damage caused by metal theft to public infrastructure and the economy by restricting and regulating trade of waste, scrap and semi-finished metals. Implementation of the policy measures will proceed along what may broadly be described as a three-phased approach.

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Amendment notice published to prohibit the export of certain semi-finished metal products

In Government Notice No. 1212 published in Government Gazette No. 47202 dated 5 August 2022, the Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition (the “Minister”) published a draft notice for public comment in terms of which the Minister proposed amending the export regulations contained in Government Notice No. R. 92 published in Government Gazette No. 35007, dated 10 February 2012.

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Amendment notice published for import controls set to be put in place on the importation of certain metal processing machinery and mechanical appliances, including furnaces, granulators, guillotines and shredders

The Commission requested interested parties to make submissions and/or comments on the guidelines on the importation of certain metal processing machinery and mechanical appliances, including furnaces, granulators, guillotines and shredders.

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NFTN urges young researchers to submit papers for the WFO 2023 conference

The National Foundry Technology Network (NFTN) at the CSIR is urging young South African researchers and early career professionals to submit papers for possible inclusion in the virtual World Foundry Organisation (WFO) Foundry Young Researchers and Early Career Professional Conference in April this year. Deadline for submissions is 15 February 2023.

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Focal theme at the coming metallurgy trade fairs GIFA, METEC, THERMPROCESS and NEWCAST: Digitalisation of foundries – the path towards the future

“Digitalisation has arrived in the foundry industry. While still standing in the shadow of their sibling sector, the steel industry, foundries have now also realised the potential of digital transformation, driven by the wish to improve the margins of existing business and increasingly by the challenges of decarbonisation.”

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ASK Chemicals inaugurates new plant in Zhenjiang, China to increase capacity for the area

On November 9, 2022 ASK Chemicals celebrated together with its employees the grand opening of its new plant in Zhenjiang. The production at the new site will be ramped up in stages, starting with the company’s leading inorganic binder technology Inotec and followed by ASK Chemicals’ water-based coatings technology and risers.

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Ironveld completes smelter refurbishment

Starts producing high-purity iron ahead of schedule. Ironveld has confirmed its subsidiary, Ironveld Smelting, has completed refurbishment of the first of the three furnaces at the Rustenburg smelter complex. It has also successfully produced metal from the furnace, marking a transformational step in the company’s development.

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South Africa’s Sasol and ArcelorMittal collaborate to produce green steel

The companies will assess the feasibility of producing green hydrogen in Saldanha Bay to produce green steel. South African petrochemicals company Sasol has partnered with steelmaker ArcelorMittal South Africa to explore the use of green hydrogen for steel production. The partners will also develop carbon capture technology to produce sustainable fuels and chemicals.

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Open tender for Transnet non-operational locomotives

State-owned Transnet says it has reached an impasse with CRRC E-Loco Supply, following an “unwillingness” on the part of CRRC to engage with the relevant authorities in South Africa to normalise its operations in the country. State ports and freight rail company Transnet has announced that it will issue an open tender for eligible original equipment manufacturers to step in to rehabilitate locomotives supplied by CRRC E-Loco Supply.

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December 2022

ABP equips AYD with innovative induction technology and everything it requires for fully digital production

The cooperation between AYD Automotive Industry and ABP Induction is a true success story with good prospects for the future. The Turkish family-owned company, a global leader in the automotive sector for the production of steering and suspension parts, will in future rely on ABP Induction’s innovative induction furnace technology for the production of brake discs.

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Knights Sales now exports more than 50% of total production

List of countries now includes Mexico. Just over three years ago Vincent van der Walt decided to emigrate to the United States of America. There were a number of reasons that Vincent took this big decision but one of the primary factors was to explore the possibility of extending Knight Sales’ penetration into the export market with the US being a primary target.

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Aluminium Metal Recyclers invests in Olympus Evident and Belec equipment to analyse materials

Aluminium Metal Recyclers have recently taken delivery of a new Belec In-Spect arc-spark optical emission spectrometer and an Olympus Evident Vanta handheld XRF, both of them supplied by Innov-X Africa, a supplier of portable and handheld XRF elemental analysis instruments for metals and alloys, mining and geology, scrap and recycling, environmental and consumer safety, education and research and general manufacturing requirements in Africa.

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Measures to restrict trade in scrap metal approved by Cabinet

The South African government has taken a stringent decision to restrict the trade in scrap metal in a bid to address the damage to public infrastructure and the economy after seeking extensive legal opinion. Minister in the Presidency Mondli Gungubele said recently that Cabinet had considered and approved the comprehensive package of measures to restrict trade of waste scrap and semi-processed metals.

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ISRI submits comments on South Africa’s export ban proposal, offers guidance on metals theft

In a recent Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries’ (ISRI) newsletter – Scrap News – Hannah Zuckerman reports that on 25 August 2022 the ISRI, based in Washington DC, USA submitted a letter to the government of South Africa regarding the country’s draft policy proposal of 5 August 2022 to restrict and regulate trade of ferrous and non-ferrous metals.

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Temporary scrap metals ban intended to halt the destruction of our infrastructure: SAISI

“The South African Iron and Steel Institute (SAISI) has extended support to the proposal by the government to impose a temporary six-month ban on exports of scrap metals from the country. The Department of Trade, Industry and Competition (dtic) proposed the ban as part of a comprehensive plan to tackle the rising incidents of theft and vandalism of South Africa’s infrastructure.”

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Keegor South Africa honoured with two industry awards

The Financial Director of Keegor SA, Michelle Austin was named Business Woman of the Year at the 2022 Steel and Engineering Industries Federation of South Africa (SEIFSA) Excellence Awards, held on 17 November 2022, in Johannesburg. Now in their eighth year, the SEIFSA Business Woman of the Year award is bestowed to a successful woman-owned or led business in the Metal and Engineering (M&E) sector and who has made a significant contribution.

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Around 200 jobs on the line as Naledi Foundry, a foundry part-owned by the IDC, went on auction

Around 200 employees at Naledi Foundry in Gauteng, which was placed into business rescue in April 2022, are fearing for their futures after the group’s assets were put up for auction, which took place at the end of October 2022. The foundry, which falls under the Naledi Inhlanganiso Group, is 46% owned by the Industrial Development Corporation (IDC), which has invested R557 million into the venture.

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Lipsobex acquires remaining 30% in Boschpick Foundry & Engineering

Newcastle, KwaZulu-Natal-based Lipsobex has announced that it has acquired the remaining 30% shareholding in Boschpick Foundry & Engineering, a foundry and engineering company that it first acquired a 70% shareholding of in 2018. The agreement was concluded in mid-November 2022.

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IDC increases stake in Mozal

The Industrial Development Corporation of South Africa (IDC) has increased its stake in Mozal Aluminium, the largest aluminium smelter in sub – Saharan Africa. The investment follows IDC’s decision to exercise its pre-emptive rights to acquire an additional 8.445% shareholding and related rights from MCA Metals Holding GmbH (a Mitsubishi subsidiary). Prior to this transaction, the IDC held 24% equity in Mozal which has since increased to 32.45%.

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Greater use of lean manufacturing techniques to improve foundry competitiveness

No matter how big or small a manufacturing facility is, issues of inefficiencies and low productivity seep into the production system, which can later affect many aluminium sand-casting foundries in some form. This is according to the National Foundry Technology Network (NFTN) Senior Project Manager Isidore Kilongozi at the recently hosted AFSA International Aluminium Conference in Cape Town.

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United Kingdom (UK) and South Africa to drive economic growth together

The UK and South Africa will join forces to drive economic growth and turbocharge infrastructure investment, Prime Minister Rishi Sunak has announced in a statement at the start of President Ramaphosa’s recent formal state visit to the UK. The statement said that the UK was partnering with South Africa in a number of initiatives and programmes to promote investment in infrastructure and skills development in South Africa.

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Production of next-generation Ford Ranger commences

Ford Motor Company’s Silverton assembly plant in Pretoria, recently became the third plant to commence production of the Next-Generation Ranger for customers around the world. The start of the Next-Gen Ranger production follows a major investment of US$1.05 billion (R15.8 billion) in Ford’s South African operations and supplier tooling. South African-built Rangers are exported to more than 100 markets, including Europe.

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10 automotive component manufacturing companies in Tshwane SEZ in full operation to support production of next generation Ford Ranger

The Tshwane Automotive Special Economic Zone (TASEZ) has officially entered into full operation, with all 10 automotive component manufacturing companies in the special economic zone (SEZ) having started full production. This follows after Ford Motor Company of South Africa (FMCSA) started production of the next generation Ford Ranger.

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AMSA pulling the wool over government’s eyes with a 41 per cent steel duty protection application

The National Employers Association of South Africa (Neasa) says in a statement: “In a carefully worded application where AMSA use selective facts and omitting factual truths, they applied for a 41 per cent duty protection on certain steel products (galvanised coil, 0.45mm and thinner). Technical detail and unverified statistics paint a complicated picture of why this duty, on top of the 10 per cent that already exists, should be granted.”

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Auto industry’s supply woes unlikely to be resolved in 2023 – VWSA’s Schäfer

It seems unlikely that the supply-chain issues in the global automotive industry will be resolved in the next year, says Volkswagen passenger car brands global CEO and former Volkswagen South Africa (VWSA) boss Thomas Schäfer in an Engineering News article. He notes that the semi-conductor shortage is “still not over”, and that industry faces “incredible disruptions” in the global supply chain.

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The City of Cape Town’s Metal Theft Unit, also known as the Copperheads, is intent on curbing metal theft

The City of Cape Town’s Metal Theft Unit, also known as the Copperheads, says it is intent on curbing metal theft and is aiming to double the amount of copper confiscated year-on-year. The unit has already confiscated 2 489kg of mixed copper and 252.5 metres of cable this year, a statement released by the City’s mayoral committee member for safety and security said.

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Scrapyard in Vaal hides biggest illegal copper haul

Police recovered a reported 9 tons of stolen copper cable in Vanderbijlpark, an industrial town with approximately 95 000 inhabitants, situated on the Vaal River in the south of Gauteng province, in what is believed to be the single biggest strike of its kind against illegal copper merchants to date in South Africa, writes Craig Kotze of Vaalweekblad.

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SAIF 2022 annual golf day

The South African Institute of Foundrymens’ Annual Golf Day took place on Thursday 10th November 2022. The event was held at the Reading Country Club. The following companies are thanked for sponsorship of prizes, tee boxes and greens: ASK Chemicals, Cabocraft, Cronimet, DZanetech, Foseco, Grinding Techniques, Groves Foundry, Insimbi Alloy Supplies, Lauds Foundry Projects, Mustang Foundry, Pferd SA, Pentagon Resources, Scientific & Precision Solutions and Thos Begbie.

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Machine Tools Africa 2024 set to take place in May 2024

Machine Tools Africa 2024, Africa’s biggest and only machine tools exhibition showcasing cutting edge developments across the machine tools and related industries was announced in November 2022. A Machine Tools Merchants’ Association of South Africa (MTMA) event, Machine Tools Africa will be taking place at the Expo Centre in Nasrec, Johannesburg, from 21-24 May 2024.

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Metso Outotec to deliver world’s largest capacity flash smelting furnace to a copper producer in Africa

Kamoa Copper S.A. has selected Metso Outotec to supply a high-capacity Direct Blister Furnace to the company’s copper mining complex expansion in the Democratic Republic of Congo. The value of this type of a delivery is typically between EUR 30 to 40 million. The order has been booked in Metals’ third-quarter orders received.

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October 2022

That certain something in the casting process: New hybrid additive for more effectiveness and efficiency in casting production – ASK Chemicals

Missed out on an order again? The competitor tendered a cheaper bid again? Who hasn’t experienced that? The major challenges in the foundry industry are pronounced cost pressure and strong competition for the technological leading-edge. This article provides an overview of how the use of hybrid additives can increase both effectiveness and efficiency in casting production.

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Advanced Laboratory Solutions celebrates their 25-year anniversary

One of South Africa’s leading laboratory and test instrument supply companies, Advanced Laboratory Solutions (ALS), began its 25-year-long journey on the 1st September 1997 when Alex Beccaro, Dave Perrett and Iain Ramsay formed a partnership to offer solutions for equipment, knowledge, training and other services across a wide spectrum of industries. The three shareholders shared a common story.

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Experienced foundry colleagues form partnership to offer turnkey and project management solutions

Aims are to become a major player in enterprise solutions, from foundry planning to execution. Three experienced foundry contemporaries, who cumulatively between them have over 50 years of practiced service in the metal melting industry in South Africa, have decided to pool their talents and experience and offer a turnkey project management solution for greenfield and brownfield foundries.

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Elmacast Engineering exits the grinding media business to concentrate on operating as a foundry

“A major investment in 2018 to convert the foundry into a grinding media supplier to the mining industry. The owners at the time were convinced there was a future in grinding media, and this initially entailed spending R134 million to do upgrades and expansions to the foundry,” explained Nino Ciani, who has been appointed as COO of the company and is currently tasked with converting the 66-year-old foundry back to being a foundry that manufactures quality castings of all sizes and shapes.

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Revived National Advisory Forum to help guide the work of the NFTN and CSIR in the sector

The National Foundry Technology Network (NFTN) has established the Metals Casting Advisory Forum at the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR). The forum will be made up of representatives of industry associations, academia, and relevant government departments, and has the objective of advising and guiding the plans of the NFTN and CSIR to best meet the needs of the castings and related industries.

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Rhino Quarries offers a new source of silica sand

Industrial sand plays a critical role in the production of a wide variety of ferrous and non-ferrous metals and castings and is an essential part of the ferrous and non-ferrous foundry industry. Metal parts and components ranging from engine blocks to pumps and valves are cast in a sand and/or clay mould to produce the external shape, with a resin-bonded core creating the desired internal shape.

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Import controls set to be put in place on the importation of certain metal processing machinery and mechanical appliances, including furnaces, granulators, guillotines and shredders

In Government Notice No. 1213 published in Government Gazette No. 47202 dated 5 August 2022, the Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition published a draft notice for public comment in terms of which the Minister proposed amending the import control regulations to prohibit the import of certain metal processing machinery and mechanical appliances.

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Request for comments from interested parties on export control guidelines on the exportation of semi-finished metal products

In Government Notice No. 1212 published in Government Gazette No. 47202 dated 5 August 2022, the Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition (the “Minister”) published a draft notice for public comment in terms of which the Minister proposed amending the export regulations contained in Government Notice No. R. 92 published in Government Gazette No. 35007, dated 10 February 2012, as amended, to prohibit the export of certain semi-finished metal products.

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The MRA expressly opposes a ban on the export of scrap metal

“The metal Recyclers Association of South Africa (MRA) expressly opposes a scrap metal export ban because it will not resolve the problem of infrastructure theft and it will certainly be the cause of numerous unintended consequences, that will harm a multitude of people and businesses, including not only the formal metal recycling sector and also the informal sector waste collectors, but also all generators of metal waste (scrap metal), including large-scale industry such as the mining, construction and manufacturing sectors.”

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Genesis Analytics policy options to reduce metal theft

Genesis Analytics, an economics-based consulting firm based in Johannesburg, Gauteng and with offices in Abidjan, Nairobi, Lagos, London and Toronto, have also submitted comment to The Department of Trade, Industry and Competition (the DTIC). This comment has been posted on the metal Recyclers Association of South Africa (MRA) website. Internationally, metal theft is a serious problem. Metal prices, including scrap metal prices, are multiple times higher than they were at the turn of the 21st century.

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Alstom to produce locomotive car body shells in South Africa

Alstom has expanded its manufacturing capabilities in South Africa through the acquisition of assets for the manufacturing of car body shells from TMH Africa. Alstom sourced car body shells for its electric TRAXX locomotive project with Transnet before the company filed for business rescue. Through this acquisition, Alstom has welcomed all 105 employees and retained the expertise in the country.

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Dedicated space designated for disruptive manufacturing technologies research at TWIMS Institute

The Toyota Wessels Institute for Manufacturing Studies (TWIMS), that was opened in 2018 and is situated in Kloof, KwaZulu-Natal, has officially opened what the Institute calls the TWIMS manufacturing sandbox. The state-of-the-art space includes technology demonstrators for VR (virtual reality), 3D printing, machine learning and digital twinning.

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SVI unveils six-wheeled Max 3

TSVI Engineering has unveiled a new addition to its growing range of armour-protected vehicles, the MAX 3 six-wheel vehicle. Displayed for the first time at AAD 2022 at Air Force Base (AFB) Waterkloof in September 2022, the MAX 3 six-wheeler is based on Toyota’s proven Land Cruiser 79 chassis, as with the 4×4 MAX 3. Both are powered by a 4.5-litre V8 turbodiesel powertrain. The six-wheel concept unveiled at AAD 2022 is based on the MAX 3 double cab body style.

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Denel faces funding gap for restructuring

Cash-strapped state defence firm Denel will need around R3 billion to cover a funding gap for a restructuring plan it is aiming to execute over the next 12 to 18 months, company executives told Reuters recently. Once a cornerstone of South Africa’s defence industry, Denel, which manufactures weapons and military equipment for South Africa’s armed forces and export, has faced liquidity problems in recent years.

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Paramount Aerospace Industries announces orders and customer deliveries of its multi-mission Mwari aircraft

In a major boost to Africa’s indigenous aerospace industry, Paramount Aerospace Industries, the subsidiary of the global aerospace and technology company, Paramount Group, has announced that it has secured customers and orders from multiple Air Forces for its revolutionary Mwari, the advanced reconnaissance, surveillance, and precision strike aircraft.

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IDC explores wind sector industrialisation

Visits Nordex SE’s wind turbine manufacturing facilities in Spain. South Africa’s accelerated energy transition and its push for sector industrialisation, will be led by increased local manufacturing, with a projected target of well over 55% for government procurement by the end of this decade. To achieve this, government’s support through policy, smooth procurement and investment will be the key enabler.

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Changes made to SAIF board after AGM

Following the South African Institute of Foundrymen’s 57th AGM held on Tuesday, 20 September 2022, at the Balgravia Bowling Club in Bedfordview, Gauteng one new director was elected to serve on the board of the SAIF for the following year (2022/2023). Continuing on as Directors are Nigel Pardoe, Clive Jones and Didier Nyembwe.

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August 2022

Spectro introduces Spectromaxx LMX10 Arc/SparkOES analyser for next-generation material control analysis

The LMX10 is the newest version of Spectromaxx, perhaps the industry’s best-selling arc/spark optical emission spectrometry (OES) analyser. Spectromaxx delivers outstanding repeatability, reproducibility, and reliability in material control analyses from incoming materials to in-process testing to final quality inspections, adding certainty to critical supply chains.

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High Duty Castings celebrates its 30th anniversary with investment in key technologies

Privately owned family run business and foundry, which comprises High Duty Castings and High Duty Automotive, has recently celebrated its 30th anniversary. The company has also embarked on a journey with a plan to turn the company’s facility that will tap into the ‘Smart Foundry’ concept and therefore make it a productive and quality focused foundry.

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Watt Industries energy management and control systems gaining traction at local foundries

Demand management system developed to ensure maximum saving and energy usage improvement solutions part of a wider effort to save on costs. An intelligent demand management system is an important part of today’s process management and is not just for energy management. It allows you to have real-time monitoring for process analysis.

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Rand York Minerals celebrates 30 years delivering environmentally and health-friendly chromite sand

Hosting and organising the South African Chrome Industry Dinner and Awards Ceremony, being the recipient of the South African President’s award for export activities on two occasions and elected as President of the International Chromium Development Association (ICDA) are a few of the major achievements of Rand York Minerals and its CEO Zelda du Preez.

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Two-ton Inductotherm furnace now connected at Viking Foundry

Earlier this year Cerefco completed the commissioning and start-up of an Inductotherm 900kW VIP Power-Trak Li Power and Control System at Viking Foundry, based in Germiston, Gauteng. The system included a one-ton Dura-Line melting furnace. “The VIP power supply units have one of the fastest melt rates from cold charge to pour, and melt more per kWh and kVA for lower melting costs and greater productivity,” said Grant Estman, Managing Director at Viking Foundry.

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Insimbi to dump noncore plastics business

Insimbi Industrial Holdings said its board planned to exit its Insimbi Plastics business and to dispose of the subsidiaries’ assets, as part of the plan to move away from non-core operations. “The closure and disposal of Insimbi Plastics will streamline the operations of the group, ensuring an improved platform to pursue continued growth,” Insimbi’s board said recently.

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Urgent call for the next generation of foundry men and women to step up

The National Foundry Technology Network (NFTN) and the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) are calling on South Africa’s young innovative designers and inventors to design products containing metal castings that could contribute to the growth and sustainability of the foundry sector in South Africa.

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Taking a closer look at Thos Begbie…with a new Belec In-Spect table-top OES

In the metal producing and processing industries, the exact determination of the alloying elements is becoming more and more important. The alloy composition guarantees the properties of the corresponding material. When these compositions have to be measured during the melting process in a foundry, speed, precision and reliability are essential.

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ArcelorMittal plans to invest in rail transport equipment and has intention to gain access to the rail network

ArcelorMittal South Africa is considering investing in rail transport equipment, Chief Executive Kobus Verster said recently, after a decline in first-half steel production partly blamed on logistics problems dampened strong earnings, according to a Reuters news release.

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Weir Minerals Africa dedicates new laboratories to its late regional director Grant Ramsden

Weir Minerals Africa has recently opened two new laboratories at its Isando, Gauteng facility. One of the laboratories will serve its foundry operations and the other one is to serve the rubber plant requirements. Both have been dedicated to the company’s late regional director Grant Ramsden.

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Messe Düsseldorf’s ecoMetals campaign for GIFA, METEC, THERMPROCESS and NEWCAST 2023

“How green are the energy-intensive foundry and steel sectors of industry? How sustainably do they produce and how eco-friendly is their use of materials? These are the pivotal questions dominating the agenda and providing ample food for thought next year,” said Friedrich-Georg Kehrer, Global Portfolio Director in an interview on Messe Düsseldorf’s ecoMetals campaign.

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Ford launches new high-tech stamping plant for next-generation Ranger

Ford Motor Company’s R15.8 billion investment in its Silverton Assembly Plant operations in Pretoria is coming to fruition, with the completion of one of its largest and most ambitious projects to date – the high-tech new Stamping Plant, which is now in operation. The vast facility measures a staggering 10 320m², equivalent to almost 1.5-times the size of a standard soccer field (7 140m²).

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The Tharisa mine near Rustenburg is expected to continue open-pit operations until 2041

The Tharisa mine, an open-pit platinum group metals (PGM) and chrome mining operation in the North West province of South Africa, is expected to continue open-pit operations until 2041 according to a report in Mining Technology. The Tharisa mine is operated by Tharisa Minerals, a subsidiary of European integrated resource company Tharisa.

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German foundry Siempelkamp Giesserei demands introduction of electricity price for industrial users

The war in Ukraine has drastically increased electricity costs for consumers and companies. The Krefeld-based world market leader for hand-mould casting solutions, Siempelkamp Giesserei GmbH, is calling for the immediate introduction of a nationwide industrial electricity price at a low price level in view of ever increasing energy prices.

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June 2022

Global sourcing in times of ‘perfect storms’

“Earlier this year we signed an agreement with Hüttenes-Albertus (HA) to distribute and supply HA foundry technology and products throughout the sub-Saharan region. With this collaboration DZanetech reinforces its position in the sub-Saharan foundry market and will in turn bring some new Hüttenes-Albertus products to the market, sleeves and special sands among them,” said Jacques Swanepoel, National Sales Manager for DZanetech.

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The scrap metal issue: Reprocessing of genuine metal waste into valuable product

Depending on which report you read each of them predicts that the metal recycling market is expected to witness market growth at various rates. The point is that they all predict growth because of the increase in demand for the product for various industrial applications is escalating. The increase in the urbanisation and industrialisation across the globe acts as one of the major factors driving the growth of the metal recycling market.

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AFSA to host International Aluminium Conference and Exhibition in October 2022

In line with the Aluminium Federation of South Africa’s (AFSA) vision of ‘A growing, self-sufficient, sustainable, competitive, and innovative South African aluminium industry,’ AFSA is planning to host the AFSA International Aluminium Conference and Exhibition, which take place on the 26th and 27th October 2022 at the Cape Town International Convention Centre (CTICC). The central theme of the conference is: ‘Aluminium – Lightweight, Durable and Sustainable.’

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Optimising investment casting at Ceracast

Postmasburg, Northern Cape might be a little out of the way and not a weekend getaway for most living in the main South African metropolises – the driving distance between Johannesburg and Postmasburg is 608kms and from Cape Town it is over 900kms – but it is in the heart of manganese and iron ore mining ‘country’ in South Africa. The Northern Cape province produces almost all of the manganese mined in South Africa.

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Viking Foundry invests in melting capabilities

One-ton Inductotherm coreless induction furnace installed. The heart of every foundry is the melting platform and the furnaces that it uses to melt its metal. These furnaces use different technologies to melt the material and the technology used is dependent on a number of factors. However, the aim of every furnace manufacturer must be to manufacture a product that will consume as little heat and fuel as possible.

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Proof of the pudding is in the firing

Palmer’s Armoury specialises in the manufacture of model cannon replicas to scale. For most of us, a hobby is what we do outside work. Not so for Palmer’s Armoury, a Port Elizabeth-based manufacturer and supplier of top-quality scale model cannon replicas in sterling silver, bronze, brass, stainless steel and zinc. It’s not unusual for a hobbyist to morph into an inventor.

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Naledi Foundry and RelyIntraCast join Cast Products South Africa in business rescue

According industry talk one was waiting to happen and the other one is a real shock! It is with disappointment to announce that RelyIntraCast, one of the leading investment castings companies in South Africa and Naledi Foundry Operations, one of the oldest and largest ferrous foundry operations in South Africa, have both been placed in business rescue during April 2022.

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Industry does not think much about ministers’ call that government should consider a temporary ban on the export of scrap metal

Transport minister Fikile Mbalula has echoed the call made by Cabinet colleague and Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan, who said in Parliament that to alleviate the risk of continued damage, theft and vandalism of freight rail infrastructure, the government should consider a temporary ban on the sale of scrap metal.

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A notable increase in the theft of water meters reported in Cape Town

The City of Cape Town says it has seen a spike in the number of water meters stolen in several suburbs. In a recently released statement The City of Cape Town has reported a notable increase in the theft of water meters reported across the city over the past eight months. A total of 3 341 incidents have been reported from July 1, last year, to April 30, this year.

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Cabinet approves white paper aimed at putting SA rail ‘back on track’, allowing private sector investment

Ambitious – but will they ever be realised? Cabinet has approved a white paper aimed at developing South Africa’s critical rail infrastructure. The approval of the white paper comes as Transnet made an R8 billion loss in the 2020/21 financial year. The new policy details the department’s plans to break away from past strategies by introducing new plans aimed at auctioning the development of the South African railway network.

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Electra Mining Africa 2022 scheduled to take place from 5 to 9 September 2022

After two years of restrictions, exhibitions and events are now successfully re-opening globally and good news for local industry is that Electra Mining Africa will be going ahead as a live in-person event this year. Several other exhibitions have taken place over the last months with excellent results being reported by all involved.

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Successful Industrial Efficiency Conference hosted by the NCPC-SA and NFTN

The biennial Industrial Efficiency Conference was hosted at the CSIR International Convention Centre on 25 and 26 May 2022, with a focused metal castings session on day one. The event was aimed at equipping industry and sharing best practice for improving efficiency, environmental impact and productivity and is presented free of charge to industry to support the transition to a green economy.

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Cisco Steel to begin operating again to the dismay of nearby residents

In a Cape Argus report Shakirah Thebus writes that Kuils River residents are appealing for answers as well as for their cries related to pollution and grand negligence to be heard. The source of their noise, air and water pollution is believed to be the site of the Cape Town Iron and Steel Works (Cisco), a scrap-based steel-making company.

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April 2022

Reducing formaldehyde emissions from water-based coatings

Whether in our personal lives or in business, environmental sustainability is an increasingly high priority. We all must do our utmost to comply with new, more stringent and/or revised regulations in order to leave a healthier plant for the next generation. Now is therefore the right time to apply products that can reduce the environmental impact of foundry operations.

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Wadeville Foundry adds non-ferrous metals to its casting capabilities

A jobbing foundry is described as a fully equipped foundry that does not cast its own components for the company product, but rather it undertakes contractual casting for other companies. The term jobbing foundry is used to indicate the ability of a foundry to handle efficiently a variety of patterns from which relatively few castings are made per order. Typical jobbing foundry orders can range from one piece to several hundred pieces.

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NCP International Ltd delivers on ball grinding mill breakdown in Kazakhstan

NCP International Ltd has successfully delivered three large components that make up a ball grinding mill used in the mining industry, to a gold mine in Kazakhstan, a transcontinental country located mainly in Central Asia, and partly in Eastern Europe. Kazakhstan borders Russia in the north and west, China in the east and Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan in the south.

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ASK Chemicals’ webinar: Emission reduction potentials in high-volume applications

Be the first to know about new developments and stay up to date! ASK Chemicals launched their ASK Online Academy in June 2021 offering the foundry industry an additional channel from which to gain expert knowledge and latest insights about the company’s solutions in foundry chemistry, feeding technology and metallurgy.

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Claude du Toit takes on General Manager roll at Mineral Zone

Six years after joining the Mineral Zone family as Sales Manager for the Foundry and Refractory division, Claude du Toit has now been appointed General Manager of the company. Mineral Zone is a specialist supply partner servicing the metallurgical and mining sectors in South Africa and internationally with a range of foundry consumables, metals and minerals, ore and services.

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DZanetech now offers permeability sand testing for mould and core sand

Maintaining the proper moisture levels when producing sand moulds guarantees bonding takes place between materials to create the right cohesiveness, permeability, refractoriness, surface finish, flowability and chemical inertness. Without achieving these properties, the quality of castings becomes compromised.

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Government asked to lift steel import duties

South Africa’s downstream steel industry will be crippled by the closure of ArcelorMittal SA’s (Amsa) Newcastle plant for three months, raising the call for the lifting of import duties on the metal. National Employers Association of South Africa (Neasa) chief executive, Gerhard Papenfus, said on Monday that the firm’s natural protection against imports, which made it a “consequentially highly profitable business”, needed to come to an end.

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Saftronics – the power electronics specialists – targeting induction heating and melting industries

The history behind Saftronics begins over 55 years ago, in 1966. Bonne Posma, the entrepreneurial founder of the company, noticed a gap in the South African power electronics market. Although the market was vigorous, and growing, there was not a single local company competing for the business – everything bought and sold in this sector was imported.

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Hawks arrest company owners in alleged R4.6 million illegal copper operations

A former South African boxing champion has been arrested for allegedly being involved in an illegal copper operation in Randfontein. Two men, arrested and charged with the contravention of the Second Hand Goods Act and contravention of the National Environmental Act have been released on R5 000 bail each.

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Free sector workshop at 5th Industrial Efficiency Conference (CSIR, Pretoria) – 25 and 26 May 2022

The biennial Industrial Efficiency Conference will be hosted at the CSIR International Convention Centre on 25 and 26 May 2022, with a focused metal castings session on day one. The event is aimed at equipping industry and sharing best practice for improving efficiency, environmental impact and productivity and is presented free of charge to industry to support the transition to a green economy.

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Zimbabwe: Zim urged to ban scrap metal exports

Calls for Zimbabwe to ban scrap metal exports have grown amid revelations about 30 foundry and steel recycling firms that have closed shop in the last two years due to acute shortage of feedstock and high scrap metal prices, according to Martin Kadzere writing in The Herald.

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South32 expects to acquire Mozal Aluminium stake in mid-2022

South32 Ltd announced on Wednesday it expects to finalise the acquisition of an additional stake in Mozambique-based aluminium smelter Mozal Aluminium in mid-2022 following a delay. The acquisition was originally set to go through in the first quarter of 2022.

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Bell Equipment plans to shift more of its manufacturing to the northern hemisphere, away from South Africa

The company wants to be less exposed to “the risks presented by the volatility of the South African landscape going forward”. Cites civil unrest in KwaZulu-Natal, which temporarily closed its Richards Bay factory, exacerbated supply chain challenges and logistics issues created by the pandemic and global supply chain issues.

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South Africa’s finance minister worried that Ford and other companies could pull investments from country

Finance minister Enoch Godongwana says South Africa needs to urgently improve its business and service delivery conditions, or risk losing significant business investments. This entails reducing regulatory constraints, providing effective services, as well as coordinating and sequencing economic interventions, Godongwana said in an oral response to questions in parliament recently.

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Ramaphosa has information that Scaw Metals is investing R2 billion to expand its Wadeville plant (this could be the Germiston, Union Junction Works, which borders Wadeville) but no further information is readily available

President Cyril Ramaphosa made special mention of investments in the steel, energy and creative arts industries when he announced pledges worth R1.14 trillion that have so far been made over the four years of holding the annual South African Investment Conference.

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February 2022

Large orders keep Endeco Omega Sinto busy

Having just completed one of the most successful years in the company’s history, local fabricating and foundry equipment manufacturer Endeco Omega Sinto have secured orders to manufacture foundry related equipment that will keep their fabrication shop very busy in 2022.

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Fit and agile DZanetech sign agreement with Hüttenes-Albertus to distribute and supply HA foundry technology and products throughout the sub-Saharan region

DZanetech PTY Ltd has announced that the company has entered into a strategic supply and distribution agreement with Hüttenes-Albertus, one of the world’s leading manufacturers of chemical products for the foundry industry.

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CSIR secures R50 million funding for the purchase of a hot isostatic press

The CSIR has secured approximately R50 million funding for the purchase of a hot isostatic press (HIP) through the Department of Science and Innovation (DSI) High-End Infrastructure Programme. Hot isostatic pressing is a critical step in several manufacturing processes being developed under the Advanced Materials Initiative (AMI), Advanced Manufacturing Technologies Strategy (AMTS) and processes being developed for the beneficiation of titanium.

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Sigma Wear Parts expands its product offering

The Ryan family has specialised in the casting of atomised materials for over three decades. Father Terry Ryan being a founding shareholder of Thomas Abrasives, which at the time was a division of Thomas Foundry, began manufacturing low carbon steel shot to supply to both the local and export markets.

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Financially distressed Cast Products South Africa placed under business rescue

South Africa’s biggest foundry group – Cast Products South Africa – has been placed under business rescue. The company, which manufactures castings for the rail, mining, power and general engineering industries and employs approximately 852 staff, was placed under supervision and business recue proceedings when the Board of Directors passed a resolution on the 14th December 2021.

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DZanetech continues to invest in sand application testing laboratory for no-bake and cold-box applications

“In the current global economic situation, excess manufacturing capacity is a challenge that has every foundry looking to make its processes as productive as they possibly can be. As casting purchasers demand ever-higher levels of product complexity and quality, correct sand and core usage is a vital and yet often overlooked step,” said Jacques Swanepoel, National Sales Director of DZanetech.

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How green primary iron production in South Africa could help global decarbonisation

Steel is essential for the functioning of our society and economy. It is the world’s largest materials industry, generating an annual turnover of 1 trillion US dollars. Economies need differing amounts of steel at different stages of their development and business cycles. Most primary steel demand will come from the construction of new transport, energy, and urban infrastructure, including buildings.

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South Africa launches MDASat-1 Constellation to monitor oceans

The satellites will detect, identify and monitor vessels in near real-time, supporting the South African maritime domain awareness. The three MDASat-1 satellites launched from Cape Canaveral in the United States. Furthermore, it travelled to space on SpaceX’s Falcon 9 Rocket via the Transporter 3 (Dedicated SSO Rideshare) mission.

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Foseco launches its new tagline Think beyond. Shape the future

“We’re excited to unveil our new company tagline “Think beyond. Shape the future”. The new tagline reinforces Foseco’s position as an innovative and sustainable partner within the foundry and steel industries. As the pace of global change accelerates, our customers are more in need than ever of truly innovative partners,” said Enno Krueger – Foseco’s General Manager in South Africa.

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South32 to divest from Metalloys manganese alloy smelter

South32 Limited has announced that Samancor Manganese Proprietary Limited (Samancor) has entered into a binding conditional agreement for the sale of the Metalloys manganese alloy smelter (“Metalloys”) to Satka Investments Proprietary Limited (“Satka”). Completion of the transaction is subject to certain conditions, including regulatory approvals and consents. Satisfaction of these conditions is expected to occur in the June 2022 quarter.

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Green power to breathe new life into Hillside smelter

Diversified mining company South32 is working on options to secure green electricity at Hillside Aluminium smelter in South Africa’s KwaZulu-Natal province. If South32 is unable to secure an affordable source of low-carbon electricity for Hillside, this key KwaZulu-Natal operation risks becoming uncompetitive in the international market over time, given the emergence of carbon border tariffs and end-user demand for green aluminium.

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Aluminium price surge hits South African manufacturers

Price expected to reach a 30-year high this year increasing more than 40% year-on-year. The price of aluminium surged to $3 000 (R43 800.00) per ton in 2021, breaking a 13-year record with a knock-on effect on some South African manufacturers who felt the impact of hiked prices in higher production costs.

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Bright World of Metals from 12 to 16 June 2023 in Düsseldorf, Germany

The countdown is on! Companies from all over the world can now register for the four trade fairs GIFA, METEC, THERMPROCESS and NEWCAST. The leading international trade fairs with congress and high-calibre programme of side events for foundry technology, castings, metallurgy and thermo process technology will be held in Düsseldorf, Germany from 12 to 16 June 2023.

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Zimbabwe’s scrap metal rush creates a circular economy and headaches for authorities

Small steel companies are paying scrap collectors and filling a production gap left by the country’s collapsed industry. But the rush for scrap has led to vandalism and theft, according to a newspaper report in China. In the city of Bulawayo, a struggling steel industry has in the past few years found relief in small-scale producers.

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December 2021

ASK Chemicals Group completes acquisition of the industrial resin business from SI Group

ASK Chemicals Group has completed the acquisition of the industrial resins business from SI Group (New York, USA). With this transaction, ASK Chemicals Group, headquartered in Hilden near Düsseldorf (Germany), is strengthening its position as a global supplier of high-performance industrial resins. ASK Chemicals has purchased SI Group’s industrial resins business and associated manufacturing sites in Brazil, India and Johannesburg.

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Gibela’s localisation programme benefits some South African foundries

Gibela is a rail consortium tasked with building South Africa’s new fleet of 600 commuter trains. Gibela was formed in 2013 as a black economic empowerment company. The Gibela Rail Transport Consortium is a venture between French rail company Alstom and South Africa’s Ubumbano Rail. Gibela has a R51 billion contract with the South African government to manufacture 600 trains for PRASA.

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Pex Foundry to close – recent strike in metal industry was last straw

Management at the Pex Group have decided to close the foundry division of the company as of 15 December 2021. The announcement of the closure is a blow to the Western Cape foundry industry and those manufacturing companies in the area that require castings as there are very few foundries still operating in the Western Cape.

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Mike Wolhuter finally decides to retire

“With great intentions I was going to retire more than two years ago but that well-worked out plan fell through when colleague and fellow director Graham Smith, who was due to take over from me as Managing Director, decided to emigrate to Australia and left PDC in June 2020. My handover period is ending at the end of the year and I will officially take retirement this time,” explained Mike Wolhuter of Pressure Die Casting (PDC).

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Opinion: Francois Coertzen, Owner of Coertzen Engineering Consultants

I have followed the Eskom saga since paying my first electricity bill as a young man in a new political era for this country. My reference always stays with my 10 years spent in the military since 1992. I say again that a wise man who was handed a country without a shot fired would have retained the skillset and built on that.

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Realignment of the NFTN should increase the impact of sector interventions

The NFTN and the NCPC-SA partner to assist the casting industry achieve production efficiency and market competitiveness. In June 2021, Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition, Ebrahim Patel, along with business and labour from the steel and metal fabrication sector signed a master plan which, according to the introduction, aims to ‘guide the stabilisation and progress of the Industry’.

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Groves Foundry under new ownership

In January 2020 without the knowledge of the forthcoming COVID-19 pandemic, like many others, Joaquim Bernardes enthusiastically got stuck into his new venture, one that he had dreamed about and planned for – of running his own foundry. “Like many we did not expect that come 27 March 2020 Groves Foundry would be forced to close down until 16 April.”

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Durrans RMS introduces a calcined petroleum coke based low sulphur recarburiser

Carbon 99 will offer the local market big advantages. Carbon International Trading (Pty) Ltd (CIT), a James Durrans Group (JDS) company, operates a vertical shaft kiln calcination plant in Sasolburg in the Free State province of South Africa and has been in operation since July 2019. The innovative plant is the first of its kind to be erected in this country.

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Energy efficiency study to assist the metal and casting industry remain competitive

As loadshedding and other electricity interruptions become more frequent, and the costs of electricity and other energy sources continue to climb, the damage to an already challenged foundry sector is concern that the National Foundry Technology Network (NFTN) hopes to mitigate to some extent.

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Donkin Fans foundry saved from closure

When Donkin Fans, a company within the Howden Group, based in Port Elizabeth, Eastern Cape, decided to close its foundry division at its Struandale plant, Waeez Jacobs jumped at the opportunity to run his own business and acquire the assets, IP and goodwill of the foundry.

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Transnet goes digital to enable procurement and to prevent corruption in supply chain

Transnet’s e-Tender submission portal now live. In line with Transnet’s vision to digitally transform its business processes and systems, current and potential service providers will now be required to submit tender documentation electronically, via a web-based electronic platform – the e-Tender Submission Portal.

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Van der Elst looks forward to enjoying the West Coast

Gary van der Elst, Foundry/Toolroom General Manager at Wahl Aluminium, has reached retirement age and will soon take up full retirement and relocate to the West Coast of South Africa from the Gauteng area. “I have been working for 48 years now, with the majority of those years either in a machine shop or foundry, and I have now decided it is time to move on and hand over although I will not be entirely idle.”

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Robusteel to acquire remaining assets of Evraz Highveld Steel & Vanadium

The remaining assets of Evraz Highveld Steel & Vanadium, once the second-largest South African steel producer before it went into business rescue four years ago after years of losses, will be acquired by Highveld Robusteel in a US$105 million (R1.65 billion) deal that is set to boost economic activity in Witbank, Mpumalanga.

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Durban court slaps businessman with R600 000.00 fine after he tried to export 10 containers of scrap metal worth R1.1 million

A Gauteng scrap metal dealer, who tried to export 10 containers of scrap metal out of South Africa, has been given a hefty R600 000.00 fine by the Durban Magistrate’s Court, it has been reported IOL. The Court also sentenced the Boksburg businessman Gautam Lal to five years imprisonment, wholly suspended for a period of five years.

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Theft of copper is sapping South Africa

South Africa’s economic woes are being compounded by the theft of massive amounts of copper from state firms Eskom and Transnet, much of which is smuggled overseas, costing the country billions of rand a year, according to market sources, says Reuters. Eskom expects to make a 15.2 billion rand (US$1.1 billion) net loss in its current financial year.

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SAIF 2021 annual golf day

The South African Institute of Foundrymens’ Annual Golf Day took place on Thursday 11th November 2021. The event was held at the Reading Country Club. The following companies are thanked for sponsorship of prizes, tee boxes and greens: Cabocraft, Dzanetech, Foseco, Grinding Techniques, Groves Foundry, Insimbi Alloy Supplies, Mustang Foundry, Pentagon Resources, R-M Solutions, Star Recycling Company, Thos Begbie, VIP Recycling and Weir Minerals.

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October 2021

ZML Industries is following the trend of CO2-neutral melting by ABP Induction furnaces

Climate-friendly melt shop conversion from cupolas to induction furnaces. The conversion of melting operations from thermally fired cupolas to CO2 neutral medium-frequency induction furnaces is a major trend of the foundry industry. One of the technology leaders in this field, ABP Induction offers the IFM series of high-performance induction melting furnaces with a state-of-the-art process control for demanding foundries worldwide.

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Mineral Zone enters non-ferrous market with introduction of degassers, fluxes, die-coatings and lubricants for the treatment of non-ferrous metals

Mineral Zone, a specialist supply partner servicing the metallurgical and mining sectors in South Africa and internationally with a range of foundry consumables, metals and minerals, ore and services, has recently been appointed as sole agent and distributor for Aluminium Martigny France, located in the town of Chimilin in the region of Rhône-Alpes, which is in the south-east of France.

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Skills development is one of four key focus areas of the NFTN

Skills development is one of four key focus areas of the NFTN. The aim is to facilitate the establishment and delivery of effective, relevant sector skills development interventions. The efficiency, relevance and impact of the NFTN’s efforts, however, is largely dependent on how well we listen to the needs, challenges and requirements of the Foundry Sector.

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SA Steel Mills – the latest mill to join the steel manufacturing fraternity in South Africa

20 ton Inductotherm steel frame furnaces with 8 000kW Inductotherm VIP Power-Trak Power supply installed in melt shop. For many of us, early exposure to some of the interests that are a part of who we are today, were created when we were very young. It is at a time of your life when impressions are easily made and generally will be remembered for the rest of your life, whether it be a leisure activity, a hobby or your attitude to life.

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Fred Venter – the family man – remembered

It is a fitting tribute to read so many messages of real love and support about the recent passing of Fred Venter, one of the doyens and most respected foundrymen in our industry. “The family has been inundated with messages, phone calls, flowers, love and support from far and wide. This is testament to the impact our special man had on everyone in his life.”

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South African steel industry is embracing mini mills

Whether it is sheet, tube, coil, plate, rod or bar, all these products need steel to be processed, shaped, bent, formed or cut before a company can even think of being a processor, manufacturer or merchant and it needs a regular supply. Typically the machines used in this type of processing are hungry and need to run for long periods to make them productive and cost-effective.

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Ludovico Sanges, Managing Director at Duferco, gives his opinion on South Africa’s steel industry master plan

The steel industry master plan was signed on 11 June 2021, with the laudable aim of revitalising the country’s ailing downstream steel industry, which turns “raw” steel into products. The concept of a master plan has considerable merit, especially when it comes to saving a critical strategic industry, but important issues need to be resolved to make it a success.

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Inductotherm completes installation at SA Steel Mills

Four 20 ton Inductotherm steel frame furnaces with 8 000kW Inductotherm VIP Power-Trak Power supply installed in melt shop. Cerefco has recently completed the commissioning and start-up of four 20 ton Inductotherm steel frame furnaces with 8 000kW Inductotherm VIP Power-Trak Power supply at SA Steel Mills, a new steel making and processing mill that is based in Meyerton, Gauteng.

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The South African scrap system seen to suppress scrap prices

Brian Taylor of Recycling Today writes about the latest scrap metal policies to be implemented and how they are seen as being restrictions on the free trade of scrap metal in South Africa that have included an export ban and currently involve a system described by a trade advisor as one that “forces metal recyclers to first offer their scrap to domestic consumers at a large discount before they can get a permit to export.”

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Ford South Africa manufactures its 500 000th Ranger for the export market

Ford South Africa (Ford SA) has created around 1 200 incremental jobs by reintroducing a third shift to its operations at the Silverton assembly plant. The additional shift forms part of the US auto maker’s $1.05 billion investment in the Pretoria plant to produce the next generation Ranger bakkie, starting next year.

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Heritage locomotive saved from the scrap yard

P Munro Transport have successfully moved a 160 ton 30m long GMAM-class Garratt locomotive from Bloemfontein to Ficksburg. It took the mighty movers a day to cover the 210km journey. In what is believed to be an industry first, the team had to lay rail tracks on one trailer and use it as a ramp to move the locomotive onto the special 19-axle lowbed trailer.

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Aluminium price surge to put pressure on manufacturers and downstream

The price of aluminium has recently surged to US$3 000 (about R43 800.00) per ton, breaking a 13-year record, with a knock-on effect on some South African manufacturers who felt the impact in higher production costs. The increase was driven, in part, by a rise in commodity prices, sparked by supply concerns after a coup in Guinea, which is a major producer of bauxite, one of the main raw materials in aluminium, as well low Chinese input.

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South32 acquires 25% more of Mozal Aluminium

Australian miner South32 has exercised its right to purchase a further 25% interest in Mozambique-based Mozal Aluminium from Mitsubishi’s MCA Metals for $250 million. The move increases South32’s total ownership of the smelter to 72.1%. Increasing the shareholding lifts South32’s group-wide annualised equity share of aluminium production by 15% or 145 000 tons to 1 138 000 tons.

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Wits leads ambitious partnership to drive AI in Africa

The AI Africa Consortium partners with Cirrus AI to bring large-scale AI infrastructure capacity and expertise to the African research community and industry. Wits University today invited Africa’s research community to join its newly formed AI Africa Consortium which aims to develop a collaborative network focussed on the advancement of artificial intelligence (AI) and the application of AI in research and innovation.

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Zimbabwe Institute of Foundrymen appoints COO

The Zimbabwe Institute of Foundrymen (ZIF) has appointed Dosman Mangisi as its new chief operations officer, according to a report in The Chronicle. “I am excited to assume the reins in the most challenging sector, which deals mainly with the base metal industries. Value addition and beneficiation of metals is critical to the turnaround of any economy in the world,” said Mangisi.

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Auto component exports increase in 2020 despite COVID-19

Despite the extreme effect of COVID-19 lockdowns on the automotive trade globally, South African automotive component exports were recorded at R54.5 billion in 2020 from R53.7 billion in 2019. This improvement was attributed to catalytic converter exports of R25.98 billion, primarily to Europe in line with stricter emissions laws. Catalytic converter exports accounted for 47.7% of automotive component exports in 2020.

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August 2021

Spectro introduces Spectromaxx LMX09 arc/spark OES analyser

Next-generation improvements deliver ultra-reliable performance.
Spectro Analytical Instruments has announced the newest version of its Spectromaxx arc/spark OES analyser with next-generation improvements for the ultra-reliable advanced analysis of incoming and outgoing materials at metal producing and fabricating plants. Perhaps the industry’s best-selling OES analysers, Spectromaxx instruments are a critical element of supply chains worldwide.

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Progress at Atlantis Foundry proves the value of energy management

There are varying opinions of the significance of cost of energy as one of the major challenges facing the foundry industry. In the midst of numerous production and sales challenges, does it really benefit a plant to spend time and money on energy management? Evidence from the National Cleaner Production Centre (NCPC-SA) seems to suggest it is not only worthwhile, but it is a business imperative.

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Thomas Abrasives quits production of carbon shot in South Africa

With the recent reports of the company’s furnaces being sold to a scrap dealer in Witbank, Mpumalanga it confirms definitively that Thomas Abrasives will, at least in the foreseeable future, not be manufacturing carbon shot in South Africa. Thomas Abrasives has been manufacturing cast steel abrasives in Germiston, Gauteng since it was established in 1984 as a division of Thomas Foundry (Pty) Ltd.

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SI Group signs agreement to sell industrial resins business to ASK Chemicals

Agreement includes products, technology, and manufacturing assets in Brazil, India and South Africa. In separate press releases ASK Chemicals and SI Group have announced that they have agreed on the purchase of SI Group’s industrial resin business and associated manufacturing sites in Brazil, India and South Africa, as well as licensed technology and multiple tolling agreements globally by ASK Chemicals. The transaction is expected to close later this year.

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Protea Foundry – a family-orientated business with private corporate ownership

Some say the health of a country is defined by the strength of that country’s manufacturing sector. The scope and scale of manufacturing have changed considerably in the intervening centuries, but the challenge of defining ‘manufacturing’ has not gone away. If anything, changes in the ways manufactured goods are developed, produced and sold have made manufacturing more difficult to define and to link to a particular location.

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Gyratory crusher full ring spider

There is a saying that roughly goes by the general wording: The whole is greater than the sum of its parts. The problem with this though is that without quality parts, the whole has no chance of being truly greater than the sum of those parts. If one poorly manufactured component fails, it won’t matter, because the whole becomes dysfunctional. This couldn’t be truer for heavy duty primary crushing equipment and the team that was assembled to conceptualise and create a colossal casting for export to Europe.

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Policy directive on the exportation of ferrous and non-ferrous waste and scrap metal extended for two years until July 2023

Ebrahim Patel Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition has announced through a statement in Government Gazette No. 44758 of 28 July 2021 that the policy directive on the exportation of ferrous and non-ferrous waste and scrap metal extended for two years.

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The new export duty on scrap metals is effective 1 August 2021

On 14 July 2021, the South African Revenue Service (SARS) published an information notice on a new export duty on scrap metals. In 2020, export duty on scrap metals was introduced in the Customs and Excise Act (1964), (the Act). The duty on the exportation of scrap metals will become compulsory for imported, locally obtained or manufactured scrap metal effective, 1 August 2021.

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Amsted Foundry Solutions delivers on mill spares for the power generation industry

Three large yoke castings weighing 30 tons have been supplied. One of South Africa’s largest foundries – Amsted Foundry Solutions SA – has recently manufactured and delivered the third casting for an order of four similar castings for a local company that supplies product to the power and steam generation industries, amongst others. Referred to as a yoke casting that is used as the feed head for a ball mill the casting eventually has a nett weight of 30 tons.

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Celebrating the life of a skilful patternmaker – Johann van der Walt

It is with deep regret and sadness that we announce the passing of Johann van der Walt (74) in July 2021. Johann was well-known to many in the foundry industry for his skill and expertise when manufacturing patterns. Eduard Johann van der Walt passed away on the afternoon of Tuesday 20 July 2021, after a 5-week battle with COVID-19 and the damage that the virus had done to his body. He fought as hard as he always did in life. Johann’s legacy will live on indefinitely.

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Weir Minerals Africa indirectly links up with Sarco

Two of South Africa’s larger foundries have recently become linked as a result of a recent B-BEEE deal for one and the acquisition of the other one by a private equity firm that has a 25.1% stake in the first one. Sounds confusing but it is not if you read on. In a recent Competition Commission announcement the Commission has unconditionally approved the proposed merger whereby South African Industrial Group (Pty) Ltd (SAIG) intends to acquire South African Roll Company (Pty) Ltd (Sarco).

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Truckloads of copper worth millions stolen in southern Africa

Crime gangs have stolen dozens of truckloads of copper owned by miners and traders including Glencore, Trafigura and Traxys this year as they were heading to ports in southern Africa, three sources with direct knowledge of the matter said in various Reuters reports. Record high copper prices have triggered an increase in hijackings in recent months in Botswana, the Democratic Republic of Congo, South Africa, Tanzania and Zambia.

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Hudaco present favourable interim results to end of May 2021

Hudaco has presented interim results to the end of May 2021 that look spectacular when compared to its prior period numbers. It is pointed out that those were mired in hard lockdown period, creating a distorted picture. The interim results for the 2019 financial year are far more comparative as a ‘normal’ trading period. Against its half-year results for 2019, Hudaco’s revenues grew 6.5%, margins expanded, seeing gross profit rise 9% and operating leverage rallied resulting in operating profits increasing 20%.

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South Africa signs plan to support R600 billion steel industry

South Africa has signed a plan to support the country’s steel industry, the Department of Trade, Industry and Competition has said. The Steel and Metal Fabrication Master Plan agreed by the government and stakeholders in the industry that contributes R600 billion to GDP “provides a blueprint for the industry to re-energise itself and expand production,” the department said in a statement posted on its website.

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Different views on chrome ore tax

While South Africa continues to try to manage what is proving to be the most challenging wave of the COVID-19 pandemic, the chrome beneficiation industry is facing some significant challenges and needs key protection through the implementation of an export tax on raw chrome ore. A recent statement by Save SA Smelters points out that government’s sluggish adoption of a taxation on the export of raw chrome ore is costing the country an estimated R15 billion in taxable income based on the exported ore tonnages from 2020.

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It’s not just South Africa’s chrome ore that China loves, it also loves South Africa’s coal and iron ore

The booming Chinese economy is sucking in massive amounts of South African exports as it needs our mineral exports such as coal and iron ore to fuel its economy, according to Helmo Preuss (an Economist at Forecaster Ecosa) in an opinion piece in Business Report.

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Tokyo 2020: Olympic medals made from old smartphones, laptops

Used electronic devices have been recycled in a nationwide effort to produce the Olympic medals for the Tokyo 2020 Games. The project plans to set a precedent for future Olympic Games. There’s no more prestigious athletic award than Olympic gold, and at the Tokyo Olympics, the top competitors will take home medals with surprising origins. This year’s gold, silver, and bronze Olympic and Paralympic medals were produced from recycled small electronic devices like cell phones.

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June 2021

DZanetech turns one

The beginning of July 2021 will mark the one-year anniversary of DZanetech. This is a remarkable achievement considering the turmoil that the world has been through over the last 16 months. The establishment of DZanetech was planned before the COVID-19 pandemic and bravely, the shareholders of the company decided to continue with their business plan and as a result the company has now reached its first milestone of many more to come.

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Grinding Media South Africa makes major investment in melt shop revitalisation to reduce environmental impact

Company converts from electric arc furnace melting to induction furnace melting to reduce emissions to achieve environmental compliance, achieve quality improvements, reduce direct costs and enhance its safety incident awareness accordance.

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Casting and Machining Services invests in new Belec In-Spect spark OES

“After using the same instrument for 26 years we were due for a new machine especially as our instrument was not going to be repairable in the near future. The machine had served us well but there comes a time when you know you have to invest in a new instrument. Obviously today’s machines will have many more features,” said Justin Stevens of Casting and Machining Services.

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B&R Metrology add 3D printers to portfolio

With more than 23 years’ experience in CNC manufacturing, B&R Metrology Solutions does not need to be introduced to the field of validation, verification of predefined standards, traceability, accuracy, reliability and precision, which are all elements of metrology and defined as the scientific study of measurement that establishes a common understanding of units that are crucial in linking human activities.

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Viking Foundry achieves ISO 9001:2015 accreditation

“It might have taken us four years to be certified ISO 9001:2015 through SABS and it has been a long road but once you see that certificate framed and ready to display you feel very proud of the company and all of those that helped achieve the significant milestone in the company’s history,” said Greg Estman, Operations Director at Viking Foundry.

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Continuous improvement a mantra at Atlantis Foundries

Like so many industries around the world, the local manufacturing sector came to a standstill in March 2020 when national lockdowns were implemented around the world. Quite simply, the world cannot be as it is, especially during a pandemic, without manufacturing, and so it didn’t take long for COVID-19 safety standards to be implemented and foundries like Atlantis Foundries were able to resume production.

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Inductotherm introduces some firsts into Grinding Media South Africa’s new induction melting plant

One of the main suppliers for Grinding Media South Africa’s (GMSA) new induction furnace melting plant Inductotherm, represented in South Africa by Cerefco, has introduced a number of firsts for the South African metal melting industry while installing three 10 ton Inductotherm coreless induction furnaces.

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Aircure installation boosts Grinding Media SA’s environmental ambitions

Aircure offers a range of locally produced options aimed at helping companies manage air-quality problems. Removing up to 80% of the total dust or ash prior to the final filter system, will result in overall total efficiency as well as huge savings on maintenance and consumables.

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J-Tec Engineering makes major contribution to Grinding Media South Africa’s new induction melting plant

Normally behind any project involving construction and or installation of equipment there are always those that help drive it and make sure that project happens. In the case of Grinding Media South Africa’s (GMSA) recently completed new induction melting plant, that contractor was J-Tec Engineering.

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Are job losses in the metal industry set to continue?

Minimum wage increases in the metal industry have become prohibitively high. Year upon year of awarding above-inflation increases has led to a situation where minimum wage rates, especially amongst lesser-skilled employees, have been pushed to a level where the value that an unskilled labourer is able to add to his or her employer no longer matches his or her wage rate.

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Steel industry mulls drastic action to save the industry

Various players in the beleaguered steel industry came together for a round table discussion on 19 May 2021 to discuss the challenges being faced in the industry. Convened by Duferco MD, Ludovico Sanges, the round table laid bare the frustrations felt by the participants as their industry faces catastrophe thanks to uncompetitive practices by Arcelor Mittal South Africa (AMSA) and a government driven by ideology more than the pragmatism needed to restore this pivotal industry.

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Sandvik Group acquires Kwatani

In a joint announcement, Sandvik Rock Processing Solutions and Kwatani have confirmed that an agreement has been signed for the multi-national Sandvik Group to acquire the shares of the African OEM of custom-engineered vibrating equipment. The transaction is expected to be finalised around the fourth quarter of 2021, subject to regulatory approvals and other customary conditions.

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GE cuts costs by 35% in move from casting to 3D printing technology

Sister technology companies GE Aviation and GE Additive have begun 3D printing four new gas turbine engine parts for the very first time. Citing costs and time to market as primary factors in the decision, GE Aviation is making the switch from investment casting to metal additive manufacturing, despite already having a set of established casting moulds for the bleed air adapter caps.

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SRAM prototypes AI optimised, 3D printed bicycle crankarm

Chicago-based bicycle component manufacturer SRAM teamed up with design software giant Autodesk to reimagine the humble bicycle crankarm, a part that’s been relatively unchanged since bicycles were first made. Yet, it didn’t take the engineers at SRAM long to realise how artificial intelligence coupled with advanced manufacturing could revolutionise bicycle design one small part at a time.

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April 2021

Thermally-efficient crucible technology: Fundamentals, modelling and applications for energy savings

Multivariate mathematical models were created to simulate crucibles being used in aluminium foundry applications with detailed materials characterisation data as inputs. The aim was to investigate the effects of crucible geometry and materials properties changes on the overall energy efficiency of the furnace toward melting and holding metal.

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New beginnings as Steloy Foundries opens for business

New owners want to emphasise that there is no link with liquidated company Steloy Castings. It is well-known in industry that Bronkhorstspruit, Mpumalanga based foundry Steloy Castings was liquidated just over four years, reportedly owing between R120 and R130 million, having been in business for over 30 years. The aftermath of the company’s closure left many suppliers and employees angry and many unanswered questions.

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Endeco Omega Sinto secures first West African export order destined for Ghana

“Last year Ghana’s President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo turned a sod for the construction of Ghana’s first modern foundry and machining center, which will produce agriculture processing machines and equipment, farming implements and spare parts for the maintenance and repairs of this equipment,” said Roy Dias, Managing Director of Endeco Omega Sinto.

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Steel Best Manufacturing Services emerges from liquidation of Zealous assets

It has been announced that Steel Best Manufacturing Services, a 100% owned subsidiary of the Steel Best Group, has acquired all the assets of the recently liquidated Steel Best Automotive Pty Ltd, a company that was appointed in May 2016 to facilitate the rehabilitation of the Springs-based aluminium foundry operations of Zealous Automotive and Zealous Pressure Castings, which at the time was in business rescue.

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Tribute to Garth Edward Robins – Founder of G.E Patterns & Foundry cc

Garth began his foundry career in 1974 and he worked for a few different patternshops, including those run by Graham Wolmer and EC Edwards, as an apprentice before qualifying. Garth also worked for Joshua Door and a pump company and eventually decided to open up his own patternshop at home. His love of woodworking played an integral role in him becoming a patternmaker.

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Unemployed Foundry Manager turns artistic skill into a reality

“The past year was challenging and the worldwide COVID-19 pandemic not only impacted my life but millions of people around the world. My wife and I had to close our business like thousands of others.” These are the words of Anton Combrink who has had 27 years of experience in the South African foundry industry working in two large industrial foundries for nearly half of those years before being employed at a functional art foundry for 12 years as foundry foreman and then production manager.

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First phase of melting strategy completed at Thomas Foundry

For melt shops using induction equipment optimising melting cost-per-ton starts with minimising kW and kVA demand. However, to minimise exposure to the high-power rates, these melt shops should optimise operating and maintenance practices and evaluate the equipment and generator systems in use, so they too are being optimised. Environmental impact and use of energy and materials are relevant topics in companies wanting to achieve energy savings and enhance environmental performance.

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SEIFSA takes a stand – long overdue says Gerhard Papenfus

“Since the introduction of import duties to protect AMSA in 2015, NEASA (National Employers’ Association of South Africa) has been campaigning tirelessly in an attempt to have these duties lifted,” Gerhard Papenfus, Chief Executive of the (NEASA). “SEIFSA have now joined the chorus of almost the entire steel downstream in calling for the lifting of the duties – six years too late.”

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United Heavy Industries to develop metallurgical laboratory

The new integrated steel plant will include multiple primary melting units, secondary refining units for the niched steel segment, continuous casting machines and hi-tech rolling mills. In an effort to take the study of properties of metal beyond theory, diversified South African-based industrial corporation United Heavy Industries is to set up a metallurgical laboratory at its plant in Mandeni in northern KwaZulu-Natal.

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Naamsa announces name change

Naamsa has confirmed that it will no longer use the National Association of Automobile Manufacturers of South Africa in its naming conventions because the Association now represents a wider community of stakeholders across the automotive value chain. Naamsa is the industry representative that actively and responsibly represents, promotes, advances and protect the interests of local manufacturers and assemblers of passenger, light and heavy commercial vehicles, as well as major importers and distributors of new vehicles in South Africa.

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Localisation is essential to transform South Africa’s automotive sector

The South African automotive industry needs to create 485 new businesses in Tier 2 automotive products by 2035. Localisation, the process whereby an increased percentage of the parts and costs of a motor vehicle are either assembled or manufactured in South Africa rather than imported, represents a significant opportunity to transform the automotive sector, while facilitating the entry of BEE participants in its supply chain.

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CSIR launches new centre to support 21st century industries in South Africa

South Africa’s photonics industry is set to benefit from the state-of-the-art Photonics Prototyping Facility (PPF) that was unveiled at the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) on Friday, 5 March 2021. The facility will enhance the development of photonics-based products, specifically the prototype-development phase, to test the market for acceptance of the planned product in the country.

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MRA seeks clarity on scrap metal changes

Through an independent international trade advisory company Xikhovha Advisory (XA) the Metal Recycling Association (MRA) is trying to seek clarity on the implementation of the export tax on scrap metal. After thorough research of all relevant documentation pertaining to the implementation of the Tax, no information could be found regarding the implementation strategy of SARS. We then contacted the relevant people at SARS.

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Scientific & Precision Solutions thriving as it nears one-year anniversary

A one-stop supplier of instruments, equipment and consumables for all your metals, minerals and material testing requirements as well as a solutions provider for your laboratory. In little more than two months, the 15th May will mark the one-year anniversary of the formation of Scientific & Precision Solutions (Pty) Ltd (SPS). SPS has continued to provide the same range of equipment as before and continued to service and warrant all products previously provided.

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African Buffalo makes a mark on South African Mint’s Big Five range

The South African (SA) Mint, a wholly-owned subsidiary of the South African Reserve Bank, has released two new coin ranges for this year, including the highly-anticipated Big Five African Buffalo coin. Introduced in 2019, the Elephant, Lion, Rhinoceros and the Leopard have already been issued as part of the Big Five coin series. However, with the addition of the Buffalo, coin collectors keenly waiting to complete their Big Five range now have the opportunity to do so.

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Churchill’s plaque goes missing in Durban

The plaque outside the Durban Post Office, commemorating the speech given by the former British prime minister Winston Churchill when he was a war correspondent in Durban, KwaZulu-Natal has gone missing. Owner of Durban Walking Tours Alison Chadwick said she was in central Durban recently and noticed the plaque had gone. President of the South African National Society (SANS), Robert King, said: “This was a part of Durban history and is very sad for Durban and South Africa.”

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February 2021

A full range of primary, secondary and thermal reclamation equipment ranging up to 30TPH – Endeco Omega Sinto

Sand reclamation has become a necessity in no-bake operations, particularly given the current challenges regarding the cost and availability of new sand. Foundries can no longer afford to operate with new sand alone and most are exploring how best to economically integrate sand reclamation systems into their processes.

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Are South African industrial trade policies being done by stealth? Why are they happening behind closed doors?

Just like the steel and chrome ore industries, the South African government has implemented a 15% duty without consultation on aluminium sheet products – gazetted on 31st December 2020. Protecting your own turf and moving away from free trade, especially China, is a global trend but not necessarily the correct one.

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Troubled blast-furnaces: AMSA unable to supply

In one of the latest newsletters from NEASAs Chief Executive it states that: “On 8 January 2021, AMSA stated that ‘with all three blast-furnaces fully operational’ they will be able to supply the South African market and beyond.” “However, during the course of the week of 18 January, one blast-furnace ceased production (as a result of a fire), a second one is unstable (being ‘erratic’ and with reduced production) and the third one is not being operated at full capacity.”

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Mineral Zone moves into new office and factory warehousing facility

Mineral Zone, a specialist supply partner servicing the metallurgical and mining sectors in South Africa and internationally with a range of metals and minerals, ore and services has recently moved into its own warehouse and office factory that is distinctly tinged with a modern stylish design – a space that combines contemporary aesthetics with industrial charm.

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Exports drive Knights Foundry to invest in a new Endeco Omega Sinto moulding line

The acquisition and growth of a new customer in the US has hastened Knights Foundry’s decision to reorganise its foundry, invest in a new moulding line and upgrade its furnace department. “We have been through various upgrades, investments in new equipment and expansions over the years,” noted Cobus van der Walt, one of several family members that work for the company.

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Macsteel’s founder Eric Samson passes away

“It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of the founder and majority shareholder of the Macsteel Group, Eric Samson. The board and entire management of Macsteel Group are deeply saddened by his passing.” In this tribute, Macsteel Global chairperson Mick Davis reflects on the life and contribution of Eric Samson, who he describes as softly spoken, compassionate and generous.

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South Africa’s proposed tax on chrome ore exports criticised. It could be an industry game changer but on the other hand it could earn government R5 billion in taxes

Foundry, chemical and refractory grades dragged into purported 30% to 40% figure – which could yield billions in tax revenue for the South African government – despite the beneficiation on these grades having already taken place.

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New South African proposed chrome tax: What does this mean for YOU?

“The South African government has proposed an export tax on chrome ore designed to support domestic ferrochrome production and the local chrome value chain,” noted Quintin Kieser, Co-Founder SwapX. “While most people never see or interact with chrome in their daily lives (apart from the shiny bits on their cars, bikes, or kitchen appliances), it is significantly important for stainless steel markets and South Africa has the world’s majority of this commodity.”

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Price Preference System: Only scraps are left for the metal recyclers

Conflicting views on what the enforced price discount on scrap metal has had. There are conflicting views on what the enforced price discount on scrap metal has had on the industries in the metals value chain, though it is clear that more support is needed for the scrap metal processing industry writes Ruan Jooste in her article in the Daily Maverick that has been adapted from a blog written by Donald Mackay of XA International Trade Advisors.

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(Yet another) update to the trade policy directive on the export of scrap metal

PPS has been extended to the end of July 2021. Between the Minister of the Department of Trade, Industry and Competition and ITAC (International Trade Administration Commission of South Africa) various proposed amendments to the PPS (Price Preference System) for scrap metal have been published. Key issues to note in the various proposed amendments are contained herein.

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Toyota reveals the new passenger model Corolla Cross to be built in Durban

Toyota South Africa Motors has invested R2.43 billion in the project that will generate around R 2.85 billion a year in local component purchases. Toyota South Africa Motors (TSAM) is pleased to announce that it will be manufacturing and selling the brand-new Corolla Cross in South Africa in the fourth quarter of the year. The model reveal was made by TSAM President and CEO Andrew Kirby at the annual State of the Motor Industry (SOMI) address.

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Castings SA’s coverage of all the latest events, open houses, demonstrations, discussions, seminars and more keeps you up-to-date with vital industry developments. Whether lowering the cost of production with innovative new machine tools or hearing first-hand from experts about solving measurement challenges, Castings SA will ensure that you are always informed about the events vital to your business.

 


Foundry Activities

This list is a comprehensive collection of companies that supply and service the various activity headings listed. Browse for specific information pertaining to the relevant heading, based upon your need. Activities and regions covered include: Ferrous, Non Ferrous, Aluminium, Brass, Bronzes, Copper, Irons (including grey, high chrome & cast), SG / Ductile, Stainless Steel, Steels, Zinc, Mixed Metal Foundries, Production, Jobbing, Production & Jobbing, In House, Special, Gauteng (Including Pretoria, East & West Rand), East / South Rand (including Alrode, Brakpan, Benoni, Germiston, Nigel, Springs, Wadeville), Vereeniging Area, Free State, KwaZulu Natal (including Durban area, Pietermaritzburg, Zululand area & Central areas), Mpumalanga, Northern Cape, North West Province, Western Cape, Eastern Cape, Pressure Die Casting Foundries, Investment Casting Foundries. Return regularly to stay updated with the new listings.

Visit the Foundry Activities Page now.

Showroom

This is exactly what it is. Showroom gives you the full contact details, a company profile, links to international suppliers, the equipment and products the company supplies, applications and engineering support that the company provides and links to the editorial stories of the company and its partners that have appeared in Castings SA.

Visit the Showroom Page now or click on the advertisers logo on the right.

Job Market

Too many times we hear gripes of “I cannot find the right person”, or “I advertise in the local newspaper and my inbox is flooded with emails from the wrong applicants”, or “the recruitment agency does not understand my business and wastes my time with sending the wrong applicants”.

Visit the Job Market now.