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Sierra Leone awards off-grid solar PV project contracts

Laos-based Sunlabob Renewable Energy on Friday announced it has been awarded two contracts for the design, supply, installation and local training for 13 turnkey solar photovoltaic (PV) power plants in offgrid areas of Sierra Leone. The installations – funded by the United Nations Industrial Development Organisation (Unido) – would provide reliable electricity supply to universities, training facilities and community centres to facilitate local enterprise development and improve Internet access. “Providing offgrid areas with renewable energy not only enables dependable and affordable electricity, but also opens the door to positive, long-term social and economic development,” said Sunlabob founder and CEO Andy Schroeter.

Authors: Dubai Engineering Jobs Admin

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Solar energy to become cheaper than electricity – PPA Energy

While solar energy was currently cheaper than energy derived from diesel plants and generators that were often used as a substitute to conventional coal-fired power, it remained more expensive than coal-fired electricity generation. “This scenario is set to change,” said energy management consultancy firm PPA Energy South Africa executive director Graeme Chown.

Authors: Dubai Engineering Jobs Admin

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Sumbandila provided lessons for next SA satellite

The South African National Space Agency (Sansa) has learnt valuable lessons from the Sumbandila micro satellite programme. Sumbandila failed last year after operating in space for less than two years, a shorter time than hoped for. "Sumbandila was an experiment in using commercial-off-the-shelf (COTS) components. In many respects it was a success," Sansa space programme manager Francois Denner told Engineering News Online on Thursday. "We now have a space heritage in COTS components instead to having to use very expensive space-certified components."

Authors: Dubai Engineering Jobs Admin

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Treasury invites budget suggestions

National Treasury and Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan on Monday invited South Africans to submit suggestions on the allocation of the national budget.

Authors: Dubai Engineering Jobs Admin

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Truckers sign wage deal, strike off

South African truck drivers have signed a wage deal to end a three-week strike, the freight employers group said on Friday, putting an end to a walk-out that has hit deliveries of fuel, cash and consumer goods in Africa's top economy. More than 20 000 truck drivers have taken to the streets in often violent protests since late September, demanding higher wages. At least one person was killed and dozens of trucks were torched by demonstrators.

Authors: Dubai Engineering Jobs Admin

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Union federation wants Defence Minister to intervene in Denel Aviation retrenchments

The Federation of Unions of South Africa (Fedusa) sent a letter to the country’s Minister of Defence, Nosiviwe Noluthando Mapisa-Nqakula, seeking a meeting to urgently discuss the looming retrenchment of the 538 employees of Denel Aviation’s Denel Personnel Solutions/Aero Manpower Group (DPS/AMG). More than half of the affected workers are represented by Fedusa member trade union UASA. The federation is hoping to arrange the meeting as soon as possible, which would involve leaders from both Fedusa and UASA. Denel Aviation recently confirmed that it will start to retrench the entire workforce of DPS/AMG with effect from the end of March. This is because the South African Air Force (SAAF) will not be renewing its current contract with DPS/AMG, which lapses at that time.

Authors: Dubai Engineering Jobs Admin

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V&A Waterfront building second in SA to get six-star green rating

The new No 1 Silo office building at Cape Town’s Victoria & Alfred (V&A) Waterfront has been awarded a six-star Green Star SA rating by the Green Building Council of South Africa (GBCSA). The Green Star rating system was established by the GBCSA in 2008 with the aim of evaluating the potential environmental performance of buildings.

Authors: Dubai Engineering Jobs Admin

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Vodacom expects more MTR reductions, but opposed to elimination call

JSE-listed Vodacom on Friday contested the suggestion of eliminating mobile termination rates (MTRs) altogether, saying it would be a counterproductive move that the group would not support. The mobile giant was responding to comments made by the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (Icasa) earlier in the week that MTRs should be further reduced to between 15c and 25c, and eventually eliminated. The regulator made the suggestion based on its assessment that previous MTR cuts had not produced the intended increase in competition.

Authors: Dubai Engineering Jobs Admin

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Wage talks in truck driver strike collapse

Wage talks to end a strike by more than 20 000 truck drivers in South Africa have collapsed after unions rejected the employers 18% pay rise offer over two years, the Road Freight Employers Association said on Thursday. "This afternoon the unions responded that once again they do not accept the deal which met their demand of 18 percent over two years," the employer group said.

Authors: Dubai Engineering Jobs Admin

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Webber Wentzel awards R895m tender for new offices

Webber Wetzel Attorneys has awarded the R895-million tender to build its new headquarters to Redefine Properties. The development, located at the firm’s 90 Rivonia Road property, in Sandton, was expected to have a value of some R1.1-billion once development was complete in 2014, and would involve the demolition of the existing building. The 34 500m2 development would be divided into two wings; one wing of 26 000 m2 would be occupied by Webber Wentzel, and the other would be developed for its future expansion. The offices featured seven parking levels with three entrances and exits off Rivonia Road and Katherine Street, with seven offices levels constructed above.

Authors: Dubai Engineering Jobs Admin

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